What Makes Good Compost For Gardens

August 16, 2013 in Organic Gardening by Christine

Good Compost – How to Make Good Compost for Gardens

How-to-make-the-best-compost-for-daylilies1Are you tired of searching the stores for the best fertiliser that you can use to maximise the potential of your garden in Australia? Best you learn how to make your very own good compost/fertiliser that will perfectly do well in growing plants as well as daylilies.

Plants love compost, the best compost for gardens is made up of different kinds of organic matter. This works by nurturing the soil and making it more conductive for effective plant growth. This is highly recommended because it does not involve the use of any chemicals unlike the usual types of fertilisers that you can purchase from the fertiliser store. Using chemical based fertilisers can actually be harmful and can be very damaging to the garden as well as to the environment in general. If you want a safer and more effective tool to promote your plant growth, especially that of your garden or vegetable plants, you should definitely consider using the compost instead of fertilisers.

Making the best compost can definitely be very easy and affordable. Compost is just made of organic materials, most of them, you don’t even need to buy. To make the best compost, it is important that you keep the compost materials moist but not over wet. Compost can ferment because there is not enough oxygen and this can lead to a smelly pile of compost. If compost is already on the wet side and you are expecting loads of rain it is best to cover up the compost pile with a tarp till the rain stops. It is also recommended that the entire compost mixture be kept in shade rather than be exposed to the sun while it is decomposing in your back yard. The compost pile should reach temperatures of up to 150 deg F in just a few days. If the compost pile does not heat up, you need to add more nitrogen such as wet grass, manure or blood and bone to the pile.

Types of Composters 

Composting is making the best mulches and soil conditioners. To build good compost choose the composter you wish to use. You can use or make your own compost bin, buy a compost tumbler or simply make your own compost pile on the ground by surrounding the compost pile with some wire mesh known as chicken wire.

Good Compost Ingredients for Compost – the compost ingredients will needed to be a mixture of dry/brown ingredients and green waste materials to make a good rich product. You can start your composting with resources that are within your reach. You will need a ratio of at least 25% of brown dry ingredients to one part green materials as well as some soil and manures added. A tip the smaller the materials are, the quicker they decompose.

Compost Do’s and Don’ts

You can use nitrogen based materials or green materials such as

  • Fresh lawn/grass clippingsCompost Bin What makes good compost for gardens Recycle food scraps clean up australia
  • Green leaves
  • Weeds from the garden
  • Kitchen scraps – left over fruit and vegetable peelings, mostly any green waste that is cycled though your kitchen

Dry Ingredients you can use are

  • Withered dry grass
  • Cardboard
  • Newspaper
  • Dry autumn leaves
  • Pine needles
  • Wood Ash
  • Hay or Straw
  • A light sprinkling of lime will reduce acidity in the compost heap. You can add a small amount of lime each time you turn the compost heap

Avoid using

  • Droppings from cats and dogs
  • No Milk products – milk products encourages mice, rats and wild cats
  • Plants that are poisonous
  • Diseased and Insect ridden plants and weeds with lots of seed
  • Invasive plants such as morning glory, running grasses such as couch or kikuyu
  • Bulb weeds oxalis, onion grass
  • Rinds of citrus with hard rinds eg) oranges and lemons
  • Plants that have pesticides or herbicide residue on them
  • NO MEAT – Meat certainly attracts rodent pests – leaving meat out of the compost mix will control rodent pests
  • DO NOT USE – Any type of manure from carnivores – meat eating animals their manure can contain dangerous pathogens

Composting Instructions – Once you have acquired the materials for compost, you can mix them together and allow the breakdown of such materials into a form known as humus. This can take several weeks and even months if necessary. You may need to add water to keep the moisture of the compost right. You should consider mixing the entire mixture from time to time to ensure that air will appropriately enter the mixture. This will keep the materials rich in nutrients and this will facilitate the growth of bacteria that will be responsible for the decomposition process that will keep the compost potent for use of your plants. This compost mix will be an excellent organic soil conditioner for the use of growing plants in pots as well as your garden. Do you know the more organic material in your home made compost the darker the soil will be?

When To Use The Compost – Can You Use Compost Strait Away?

Most fresh manures are considered “hot” meaning these fresh manures do burn the tender roots of young and old plants. If compost is placed in the garden fresh, the heat of the compost will definitely kill off the earthworms and the good bacteria. You can also use pig manure and the more common manures of cow and horse, sheep. It is best to let the compost sit for 4 to 6 months before you can use it because of the hot heat that the compost will generate in that time. 

Why You Should Make Your Own Compost – now you know how to make your own rich soil from compost, with this process you will save a lot of money, recycle a lot of raw materials, while being able to promote the healthy growth of your plants. You are also helping ‘Clean up Australia’ by using raw materials/composting scraps to use as fertiliser for your garden, recycling and keeping waste products from going to landfill.

These are some of the most useful tips that you can consider if you really want to produce the best compost for your plants. These tips are very easy to observe and follow and you do not need to be an expert gardener just to be able to make the compost for your plants.

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