Eliot Coleman, master gardener, like compost and makes his own. Composting involves microorganisms and the decomposition of waste such as leaves, vegetable scraps (like potato peels) and old tea bags. It is a slow, simple and methodical process. However, it is a careful process that must be watched, maintained and kept disease free while being made. You must also have the space to dedicate to the cultivation of compost. Some people create compost in a matter of months while people like Coleman takes at least over a year to make his.
Compost cannot only be an Organic, Natural and Environmentally friendly product highly reducing your footprint, most gardeners would tell you it is like having Black Gold. In our research we discovered that composting should be done when planting. While we still have several transplants to plant, most of our plants have been transplanted or were sown directly into the ground. So, we really missed the opportunity to use compost, which means we will probably fertilize more to attempt to enrich the soil and consequently the plants.
Nonetheless, we wanted to share the benefits of compost with you as you can begin to prepare and plan your composting for next season. Similar to the Soil Blocks recommended by Coleman, there are many ways to save money when composting yourself like many of the recommendations Coleman makes. While we have opted to go with store bought compost given the fact that we are in a more urban environment and lack the space we feel we need to compost in an effective manner, although compost tumblers are a good option. We think this is the best way for us to begin because we would like to work on disease management and understanding how plants thrive at this point in our journey.
Making your own compost whether on bare ground or via a tumbler you will reap the following benefits:
- save money
- save resources
- improve your soil
- reduce your impact on the environment
- increases soil stability
- improves drainage
- retains moisture
- nutrients are not washed away by rain
- zero waste
- free or repurposed materials
- reduces landfill waste
- re-purposes valuable resources
- use less water because of water retention
- reduces cost of public waste disposal
- prolongs the life of landfills
- 40% of residential waste is compostable
- returns valuable nutrients to the soil which helps maintain soil quality and fertility
- compost is a mild, slow release, natural fertilizer that won’t burn plants like chemical fertilizers
- It also improves texture and air circulation for heavier soils (like Manitoba gumbo)
- It helps to increase the water retention of sandy soils
- It provides organic matter and nutrients which improve plant growth and harvest yields.
Compost is like nature’s way of recycling if it could. Applying compost to your garden will both fertilize the soil and feed the soil with a diversity of nutrients and microorganisms that will improve plant growth. Chemical fertilizers are just not a part of our Organic Journey because they only provide a quick burst of a limited number of nutrients that can wash away into our rivers and streams.
Do you use compost in your garden now? How can you introduce compost to your garden this year or next year? What ways can you get started with planning your garden and preparing your soil for planting next year? What would you like to grow next year? If you did not begin your garden this year, will you begin one next year? How can you start planning and preparing for your garden? Share your comments with the community by posting them below. Share the wealth of health with your friends and family by sharing this article with 3 people today. As always you are the best part of what we do. Keep growing.
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