Step 1 – if you have the space to build an enclosure consisting of planks and logs with air space between the logs when they’re fixed, (must be three sided, at least a metre in height. so you can get into one side. If not you can compost in big plastic bins. But if you’re composting in large amounts it is best to use a wooden enclosure.
Step 2 – the unwanted or left over foods you can use for composting consist of vegetables, fruit. Never use any animal products, nuts or cereals.
Step 3 – make sure you have a layered compost heap which is undisturbed. So, supposing you add a layer of vegetables, you would spread it out on evenly on your compost top. Next you can add ash if you have a wood burner, another layer could be leaves you collect, grass clippings, and in our case, we add in used hemp bedding and old hay since we have horses, which helps strengthen the compost. Normally manure or hemp bedding would not necessarily be included, but if you can obtain it, the nitrogen will help strengthen the compost.
Step 4 – we use left over coffee grounds from various outlets so if you can, try to get hold of a bag or use your own to spread on top of the compost. We keep our compost in a semi-shaded places to help it maintain moisture. Another option to break the compost down quickly, particularly if you are using plastic containers, is to use a sprinkling of garrota every now and again. It is useful for those using a plastic bin because their compost will not be open to the elements and therefore it may take longer for the compost to break down. You can purchase garrota from garden centres.
Step 5 – when the heap is as high as it can be, cover it with sheeting such as plastic sheeting or wood planks and leave it for 6 months or more until it becomes quite black and powdery like a soil. If you have enough space to do so, you will be building up another compost heap on the side and possibly a third. That permits you to leave each one to mature, to its full potential. If it dries out you can sprinkle some water to keep it moist. If you can also find worms, add them to the compost. They chew through the compost helping it break down.
Step 5- when the first one is crumbly and black, then it is ready to be used in the garden. Meanwhile you’ll hopefully have a second and third compost pile on the side so you will be moving in rotation with your compost heaps.
Step 6- the benefits – not only is it nutritious for plants, it keeps the weeds down so you do not need to use weed kills. It also enables plants to withstand disease.
Step 7 – ring up your local council before buying plastic compost bins. The council sometimes have offers since they are enthusiastic about encouraging people to recycle with waste.
About the author
Jwaydan Moyine is a classically trained Film Composer, Pianist, Cellist, Singer/Songwriter, and a Writer and Entrepreneur. She founded Earth Children to bring awareness to matters regarding the Environment, Animal welfare, Sustainable & Conscious living, Wellness & Humanitarian issues. She is heavily involved with activism for animal welfare in the UK and Egypt and child welfare in Syria, Thailand and Romania. She resides in Berkshire Running an organic food farm, an organic skincare company, and an online platform called Vegans & Elephants, bringing awareness to matters regarding the Planet, Plant based nutrition, Cruelty free living & the necessity of adapting to Veganism for the sake of Sustainability, Animal welfare and our Health. She has several qualifications in nutritional therapy, culinary medicine & holistic healing. You can find out more on what she is doing over at the Earth Children Facebook Page!
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