7 Tips you need to know for Home Composting: How to Start?

It doesn´t matter whether if you have a large background of a small one, making your own compost not only will improve the look and health of your garden but also help you reduce your carbon footprint. You can get to know the best 7 keys and tips you need for home Composting and how to start in this article, especially if you are a beginner and don´t know how to start.

Our own human waste is one of the main causes of global warming, the process of decomposing and rotting warms up the components of waste and release a greenhouse gas called methane. This process can be avoided if we start separating our garbage and placing the organics in a different pot. There is a name for this and it is Composting, which has become more and more popular through the days and everyone is talking about it. Plant lovers and sustainable warriors beware you will love composting and its benefits.

Food waste is almost 30 per cent of the total waste that goes into dumps, when composting you can help reduce this percentage and get a nutrient filled substance that can be used to feed your plants and garden. Some of us have heard about composting but never really started doing it because we simply didn’t know how to start!

Let´s have a look at the seven most useful tips we could find to get started on composting!

1. Picking the right composting method for you

Choosing a compost method that suits you better will depend on different factors. First of all, you need to know which type of compost you are planning on doing, as it is not the same process, for example if you choose vermicompost or toilet composting. Each different kind of composting has different ways of breaking down different types of waste and will also require different spaces. You will need to choose at least between Outdoor composting, indoor composting, vermicomposting (worm composting) or toilet composting. Once you have decided this, you can move forward onto the next step: space.

Vermicompost uses worms to help the decomposing process. Photo by Pexels

2. Space

If you have your own backyard, you can either start your compost pile directly on the ground or you can go for a compost bin. Keep in mind that a compost pile should always be covered and that it will also look way less neat than if you choose to compost in a bin. If you chosen one was option number 1: a compost pile, you should definitely read the guide How to Make a compost pile? All you need to know.

If your choice was an outdoor composting bin, you can either buy one big bin and prepare it for composting or you can do it yourself. Making your own composting bin would be quite fun and it will also allow you to shape it your way in order to fit perfect in your backyard. Always try to keep it away from direct sun light as it will heat it up creating funny smells around. This is by far the favorite choice as it allows you to play a little. You can make it out from pallets and in this article, you can find out how: DIY! 5 Simple Steps to Build your own Compost Bin from Pallets.

Compost bin
Outside compost bin. Photo by pexels

If your backyard is not as big to hold an outdoor compost bin or if you do not have a backyard at all you can still compost in a smaller bin that´s kept inside. Indoor composting is one of the most popular ways of composting, all you need to have is a small bin and somewhere to place it. Picking up the appropriate bin is vital for your compost and for you because nobody wants a smelly compost bin. A good bin will be able to hold a reasonable amount of waste and keep the smell inside. We can help you chose the right bin in our Tips and tricks for a successful Indoor Bin Compost article.

3. Waste Amount

Despite going for an outdoor or indoor composting, you need to also pay attention to the amount of food waste that your house produce. It is useless to have a big outdoor compost if you are just yourself, because you won´t produce the enough number of scraps to build up compost. On the other hand, if there is more than 4 people in your household and you bought a small indoor composting bin, the sum of waste will possibly be overwhelming. This means you will be likely to fill the bin faster than what it takes for food to rot.

Another factor that you need to consider is your diet: plant based diets produce higher amount of waste per week while meat based diets waste is not the best for composting or require special needs such as an electric composting bin.

4. Animals

As you might already imagine, outdoor compost piles tend to smell, therefore attract wild animals. If you live in a city this might not be a big issue for most of the wild animals run away from the crowds, but in suburban zones the smell of a compost pile could be tempting for animals such as bears. And this is the main reason why you should always keep your compost pile covered and avoid throwing meat or fish waste.

Also if your house is also home for a pet, they will instinctively go to smell either an outdoor bin or an indoor one, so you should keep your bins away from places they can reach to.

5. Kids and Toddlers

Just as pets, kids love sneaking around small reachable corners of the house while they explore this amazing world. No wonder why they would find an indoor bin appealing. Try to keep your bins out of the way of kids to prevent the to spill them around. Not only because of this, but toddlers are known for getting to know the world through their mouth, everything they find they taste with their tongues, nobody wants to find a toddler with its mouth full of food waste, so keeping the bin unreachable will save you from running to the hospital as well. It is a healthy habit to teach kids about composting but always keep them (and your compost) safe first.

6. Moist and Air

The perfect compost will result from the right proportions of water and air flow. We have to work hard to keep our compost hydrated by watering and mixing it usually but also, we need to create a system of ventilation, so it does not become fungi. Your compost needs to be moisturized but not soaked. If you can actually see water, it means there is a lot of water in it. When choosing your bin assure that it has several holes on the base, on the lid and on the sides of it for the air to flow smoothly.

Moist compost
Photo by Pexels

At the same time, placing the bin on top of a plate to hold the drained water from it is a great idea. Turning your compost regularly will result in a better quality and less smelly compost. This is because the active bacteria on your compost need air to survive just like we do.

7. Greens and Browns

It is all about balance, what does it mean? Browns and Greens are the main ingredients of your compost. We refer to greens as food scraps and we call browns to those waste such as leaves and branches. Greens produce nitrogen and browns emit carbon. We need the same number of greens and browns mixed with water to create a healthy and proper compost. Composting will reduce the carbon footprint made from scraps. Adding a lot of greens will result in a smelly compost while having a lot of browns won´t allow the pile to decompose as fast as we would like. There, it is all about balance.

So, after reviewing all this tips and tricks you are ready to start creating your own compost. This will allow you to have a chemical free beautiful garden and it will also reduce your carbon footprint in the planet. All different types of composting method have lots of benefits, most of them are:

  • Diminish the amount of food waste: as you would be placing your food waste into a different bin than your regular rubbish one, the amount of garbage produced in a household will decrease with great signification.
  • Natural Soil Enrichment: Compost naturally enriches the soil around it and helps plants grow.
  • Less use of chemical Fertilizers: As the soil will be enriched naturally by the compost, there will be no need of using chemical products to achieve so.
  • Humus production: You can store your compost as humus to use it later while watering you garden or pots.
  • Reduce the carbon footprint: While reducing the emissions of green house gases like methane.

If you want to know how to make the right balanced pile, check this article: The Perfect Compost Ratio: Greens to Brown Balance

Watering plants with composting water
Photo by pexels.

After all of this information nobody would be able to deny the great benefits of composting and we are all ready to start using this life hacks to change not only our life but the planet´s one!

Let´s go for it!

Ailen Berezin

Writer & Content creator - Globe trotter - Book worm

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