Composting is a process used by farmers, landscapers, and home gardeners, in which organic matter is added to the soil to decompose, releasing beneficial nutrients. Farmers use a variety of materials to create compost, including livestock bedding, manure, and crop residues left over from previous harvests, such as unused stalks or leaves. Some farms also collect food waste from local businesses or cafeterias to make compost, and home gardeners may also use their own yard trimmings or food scraps.
Compost is rich in nutrients and encourages the growth of beneficial microorganisms that break down organic matter in the soil. Composting can help soils retain moisture, reduce pests and diseases, and reduce the need for additional fertilizer.
How to Make Backyard Compost
Find a dry, shady spot with a nearby water source.
Maintain equal amounts of brown and green materials, chopping up larger pieces. Examples of brown materials include dead leaves, branches, and twigs. Green materials include grass clippings, fruit and vegetable waste, and coffee grounds.
Moisten dry materials when added.
Once compost pile is established, mix or bury any new green waste added.
You may want to cover your compost pile with a tarp to keep it moist. When the material at the bottom is dark and rich in color, it is ready to use.