Fall a great time to begin easy composting at home

Rob Zimmer
It is not necessary to spend a great deal of money on fancy equipment for composting at home. A simple pile will do, here enclosed in basic wire fencing material.

Save money on expensive garden amendments every year by creating your own nutritious, organic home compost right at home. You don't need to spend a lot of money or buy fancy equipment, it is easy work and the rewards are priceless.

There's nothing better for your garden soil then a yearly blanket of rich, organic compost that you've created on your own throughout the growing season and beyond.

With the holiday season approaching, a home composting kit is a great suggestion for those seeking to do more for the environment, right at home. You can find compost bins in many shapes, sizes and styles, as well as books on composting at home and other tools to make the job simple.

Getting started in home composting is simple. All you need to do is decide on a place to build your compost heap, or place the bin, and you're ready to begin creating compost of your own.

Ready, set, go!

Many gardeners, especially in rural areas, simply choose an out-of-the-way location in the yard and begin to create a pile of items to decompose naturally to form a rich organic material.

Simply rake or scratch up the ground a bit to quickly draw in microorganisms in the soil that will start the decomposition process and you're ready to begin.

Fall leaves, along with kitchen scraps, recyclable paper and more are transformed into garden gold when you compost regularly.

Earthworms, bacteria and other organisms in the soil will naturally find your compost pile, but disturbing the soil will speed up that process.

Creating garden gold

Once you have a location in mind, begin adding material to form the start of your compost heap.

It is best to alternate, especially in the beginning, between dry or brown material and wet or green material.

Brown material includes things like dried leaves, dried grasses, newspaper, recyclable paper and cardboard.

Green material includes things like fresh yard waste, green growth, moist kitchen scraps, vegetable scraps and other similar items.

By combining yard waste and natural items with materials right from the kitchen, you'll create an amazing and beneficial compost that will sustain your garden for years to come.

Composting is easy

Now that you've got the pile started, continue to add material throughout the year to increase the compost output your system will create.

Because of the heat generated by the natural process, it is possible to continue to grow the pile even during the winter season.

Fall is a great time to begin preparing your first home compost pile or bin to create priceless organic material for your garden next spring.

Rotating or mixing up the pile occasionally will greatly speed up the decomposition process. Using a garden fork or spade, simply dig in and turn over the pile once every few weeks. This allows air flow deep into the materials, speeding up the process.

This becomes even easier when you purchase one of the freestanding compost bins or barrels that rotate via a wheel or handle. Simply give it a spin every few weeks and you're all set.

Ready to use

Depending upon the materials added to the pile, you'll see results already in spring as you dig into the pile and discover rich, dark compost at the lowest layer, ready to use.

Oak leaves and larger twigs and branches take longer to decompose, so use these sparingly unless you're patient enough to wait it out.

Once you begin the hobby of composting at home, you'll enjoy creating enough compost to enrich your garden beds for years to come.

Educating children and neighbors on the simplicity and joy of creating this wonderful, organic material right at home is the icing on the cake.

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