Composting is considered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to be a part of recycling. It reduces the amount of trash generated and keeps waste materials of out of landfills where they can take up space and release methane, a greenhouse gas. Composting can be reused in your yard and recycles nutrients back into the soil and plant life. By using a Composter in your backyard, your compost is easily and safely contained from children, pets, and outdoor pests and it is convenient for you to use on a daily basis.
Compost is easily made with landscape trimmings and food scraps. Compost requires 3 ingredients:
1. Brown For Carbon- dry leaves, small branches, twigs, straw, wood ashes, cardboard, corn stalks, fruit waste, peanut shells, pine needles, sawdust and used potting soil.
2. Green For Nitrogen – fresh grass clippings, clover, hay, green leaves, soft garden prunings, egg shells, coffee grounds, food scraps such as vegetable and fruit peels, tea bags.
3. Water For Moisture- water helps break down the organic matter. *Please Note- certain ingredients should never be added to composting and these are plastic, glass, toxins, metal, metal, diapers, oil, pet waste, cleaners, solvents or treated wood.
Here are some tips for using a compost tumbler:
1. Locate an area that receives plenty of sun for the most of the day. Optimal composting temperatures are between 120° – 150° F inside the drum.
2. Place the composter’s base on the ground and set the drum on top so the wheels are aligned with the drum’s track.
3. Unscrew the lid and put in organic material- 2 parts Brown to 1 part Green. Fill between ½- ¾ full. Do not fill completely. Do not add more material; wait until the current batch is complete, remove compost, and start a new batch.
4. Rotate at least once a week. If your batch is too dry, add more Green ingredients or water. If your batch is too wet, add more Brown ingredients.
5. Compost will be ready when dark and crumbly. If you squeeze a handful, it should produce small amounts of liquid.
6. Use compost as mulch, potting soil, or spread like fertilizer.