Want to Compost But Scared to Try? Check Out This Beginner’s Guide
Can you guess what one of the biggest DIY food trends of 2017 is? Unicorn noodles? Mermaid toast? Healthy bliss ball recipes? Well, sure, those are all pretty popular, but *composting* is actually one of the most-saved food trends on Pinterest as we speak. Today more than ever, crafty guys and gals are looking for ways to take their DIY lifestyle to the next level while doing something good for the environment. If you’ve been wanting to try composting but are nervous to get started, we’ve got you covered.
First off, let’s touch on why you might be interested in composting in the first place. Essentially, composting involves taking all kinds of organic matter (which can biodegrade — think food scraps, paper, and other kinds of natural waste) and allowing it to break down in a bed of soil. The organic matter infuses the soil with TONS of nutrients, making it fantastic for gardening and other growing pursuits.
To make it simple, here’s a list of the kinds of stuff you can compost:
- Fruit and vegetable scraps and peels
- Coffee filters and grounds
- Paper napkins and towels
- Egg shells
- Tea bags, as long as they’re not made with rayon or synthetic fibers
- Stale bread, spoiled tofu, or any other kind of leftover food
- Nail clippings
- 100 percent cotton balls and pads
- Grass clippings
You get the picture.
What to buy
Now, before you start your composting adventure, you’ll need to buy a few things. First, a good compost bin. This can really be anything, but keep in mind that you’ll probably want to place it outside, as composting can get a little smelly. The only other ingredient you’ll really need to purchase is soil.
How to compost
And now we’ve come to the most important part: the composting itself. After you’ve put your soil into the compost bin, it’s time to add your scraps. You’ll want to maintain a roughly equal balance of “green” ingredients (like grass clippings, leaves, and plant pieces) to “brown” ingredients (wood chips and branches), as the two kinds of matter contain two different minerals needed for decomposition: nitrogen and carbon.
You’ll also need oxygen to keep things going, so make sure your compost bin is open to the air in at least a few places. You should also keep it relatively moist. Do all of these things, and in a few months, you’ll have a nutrient-rich, environmentally friendly tool for growing your garden.
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