How to make your own Compost

Sreeja Kalagotla
July 20, 2021

What is Compost?

Compost is a crumbly like matter that is formed from recycling food and other organic waste that looks and feels like soil. It is nutrient rich that can be used to enrich soil and nourish growth.

What to include in the compost?

·        Fruits and vegetables

·        Leaves and dried flowers

·        Grass clippings

·        Wood chips

·        Egg and nut shells

·        Rice,bread and wheat


How to make compost?

1.      Start your compost pile on bare earth. This allows worms and other beneficial organisms to aerate the compost and be transported to your garden beds.

2.      Lay twigs or straw first, a few inches deep. This aids drainage and helps aerate the pile.

3.      Add compost materials in layers, alternating moist and dry. Moist ingredients are food scraps, tea bags, seaweed, etc. Dry materials are straw, leaves,sawdust pellets and wood ashes. If you have wood ashes, sprinkle in thin layers, or they will clump together and be slow to break down.

4.      Add manure, green manure (clover, buckwheat, wheat grass, grass clippings) or any nitrogen source. This activates the compost pile and speeds the process along.

5.      Keep compost moist. Water occasionally, or let rain do the job.

6.      Cover with anything you have – wood, plastic sheeting, carpet scraps.Covering helps retain moisture and heat, two essentials for compost. Covering also prevents the compost from being over-watered by rain. The compost should be moist, but not soaked and sodden.

7.      Turn. Every few weeks give the pile a quick turn with a pitchfork or shovel.This aerates the pile. Oxygen is required for the process to work, and turning“adds” oxygen.  Once you’ve established your compost pile, add new materials by mixing them in, rather than by adding them in layers. Mixing, or turning, the compost pile is key to aerating the composting materials and speeding the process to completion.


Benefits of composting

1.      Soil conditioner (“black gold” of soil)

With compost, you are creating rich humus for your lawn and garden. This adds nutrients to your plants and helps retain soil moisture.

2.      Recycles kitchen waste

It helps following the three R’s Reduce, Recycle and Reuse.

3.      Introduces beneficial organisms to the soil

       Microscopic organisms in compost help aerate the soil, break down organic materials for plant use, and ward off plant disease.

4.      Good for environment

Compost is soil’s best companion and improves the quality of our yield.

5.      Reduces landfill waste

They help in everyday waste management. It reduces the amount of waste being dumped at the landfill sites.

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