Composting is the process by which organic material is discarded into a composting bin where it gets broken down by micro-organisms until it forms a humus-like product called compost. Composting generally requires 2 basic ingredients: nitrogen-rich material (such as grass clippings and food waste) and carbon-based materials (such as leaves and branches).
The idea of composting has been around for centuries however it wasn't always as easy as it is now. The products available on the market today make backyard and kitchen composting a convenient and simple task.
The Home Depot carries a wide variety of compost bins and other composting accessories. Search online or speak to a store associate to find one that suits your space and needs. To learn how to compost, visit The Home Depot's guide to easy composting. This step-by-step guide will make you a composting expert in no time.
Here are 5 tips to successful composting:
Choose a location with a flat surface that's in direct sunlight. Although not essential, it's most convenient if your bin is close to an available water source. Also, try to place your compost bin as close as possible to your house. Come winter, you'll be more inclined to continue using it, the closer it is to the indoors.
2. What can be composted?
Nearly all food and yard waste can go into the compost bin, however to avoid foul odours, there are some foods that should be avoided. These include bones, dairy, fish, meat, sauces, pet waste, and fats and oils.
The consistency of your compost will tell you if you have enough or require water. The mixture should feel like a damp sponge.
4. What about the winter?
Composting can be done all year round. Even though the breakdown process slows or sometimes stops when it's frozen, it will start up again once the weather warms so there's no reason to refrain from adding materials to your compost bin during the winter months. Once the warm weather hits, turning the pile will reactivate it.
5. How do I know when it's ready?
Different climates, accessories, and bins will yield different results but when your compost is dark and rich in colour, it's ready to use as a fertilizer in your garden. This usually takes between 1-4 months.
If you have any questions about composting or if you need assistance getting started, the Home Depot experts are here to help.
Compost Council of Canada
U.S Environmental Protection Agency