#What is home-composting ?
Home-composting means the controlled decomposition of organic material such as yard-trimmings, shavings of wood, kitchen waste, paper etc. It is a means of recovery of organic matter into compost which can be used for soil improvement or as an alternative to chemical fertilizers.
#Why home-composting ?
- Composting can divert upto 30% of household waste from your garbage bins.
- It is important because when the organic garbage is thrown away in landfills, it breaks down in the absence of oxygen and emits harmful methane gas, increasing the rate of global warming.
- Home-composting also acts as a replacement to the chemical fertilisers you use in your garden, lawns and plants.
- It is an important step in following 3R’s.
#Compost Pile : What all things makes the compost healthy and for best use
A healthy compost should have much more carbon than nitrogen i.e. 1/3rd green and 2/3rd of brown materials.
Carbon-rich matter includes :- stems, dried leaves, peels, bark dust, shredded paper bags, corn stalks, coffee grounds, egg shells, tea grounds, wooden ash etc.
Nitrogen-rich matter includes :- kitchen waste, green leaves, manures, food scraps etc.
#Things which should'nt be used for composting:
- Meat, bones, fish scraps as they will lead to pests, also we can use them if you are using a composter specially designed for it.
- No pet manures should be used.
- Banana peels may contain pesticide residues, so it should be first soaked in water for sometime and then can be used.
- You can DIY a compost bin at your home.
- You can purchase standard composters – bins/digesters.
- Food waste digester is also a good option but that is useful when used at a big level.
- Earthern Pots ( make holes for aeration ).
#Steps for Home-composting :-
- Add dry and moist materials in layers and put them in alternate layers. Dry materials include: leaves, wood ashes, sand etc. Moist materials include: tea bags, food scraps etc.
- Activate your manure from time to time i.e. put green manure or yogurt + water mixture so that the process speeds up.
- Keep your compost moist by watering it ocasionally.
- Keep mixing the compost with a shovel or pitch-fork as it requires oxygen to break down. Also, once the compost starts developing, you can add in new materials.
- The compost will be ready by 2-4 months or maybe 6 months depending upon climate and quantity.
#Signs that the compost is ready:-
- There are no food scraps left in the composter.
- It should turn grainy/sandy.
- The bad adour should turn into a nice earthy smell.