Composting has proven to be an effective way of reducing waste and nurturing healthy soil. However, with the rise of different composting methods, it’s not surprising that some myths have developed, making it harder for people to know what’s true or not. In this blog post, we’ll debunk 5 common composting myths that you might still believe, and provide the facts on why these myths should be put to rest. So sit back, relax, and get ready to learn.
5 Composting Myths You Should Stop Believing Right Now
Composting is a great way to recycle organic waste, enrich soil, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. However, as it gains popularity, a few unfounded myths have been circulating, discouraging people from composting or leading them to do it the wrong way. In this article, we will debunk 5 of the most common composting myths and provide you with tips and tricks for building the ultimate compost pile.
Myth #1: Composting is complicated and smelly
Many people think that composting is complicated and smelly, but it’s actually quite easy and odorless if done correctly. Composting is just a natural process of decomposition. All you need to do is provide the right conditions for the microorganisms responsible for breaking down the organic matter to thrive.
Myth #2: Composting attracts pests and rodents
Another common myth is that composting attracts pests and rodents. While it’s true that some pests, like fruit flies and ants, might be attracted to the food scraps, proper composting techniques can help discourage them. Covering the compost pile or using mesh screens will keep the pests out, and rotating the pile frequently will prevent rodents from making a home in it.
Myth #3: Composting takes too much time and effort
Composting does require a certain amount of time and effort, but it’s not a laborious task. All you need to do is add the right mix of organic matter, water, and air, and let nature do the rest. You don’t even need a lot of space, as composting can be done in a small bin, container, or even indoors.
Myth #4: Composting requires a lot of yard waste
Many people assume that you need a lot of yard waste, like leaves and grass clippings, to compost. While yard waste is an excellent source of carbon, which is essential for the composting process, you can also compost food scraps, newspaper, and other organic materials. Just make sure to balance the greens (nitrogen-rich materials) and browns (carbon-rich materials) in your compost pile.
Myth #5: Composting requires a lot of technical knowledge and skills
Composting doesn’t require any technical knowledge or skills. All you need to know is what can and cannot be composted, how to balance the moisture and oxygen levels, and how to harvest the compost once it’s ready. With a little practice, anyone can become a successful composter.
Tips on Composting and Gardening
Now that we’ve debunked some of the most common composting myths, let’s take a look at some tips on how to build the ultimate compost pile and achieve a thriving garden.
Plant crops compatible with each other: Some plants have a symbiotic relationship, meaning they benefit from being planted together. For example, planting basil near tomatoes can improve the flavor and repel pests.
Use soap to prevent dirt while gardening: To prevent dirt from accumulating under your fingernails while gardening, rub a bar of soap under them before starting.
Use finished compost to create a potent brew for various gardening needs: Finished compost can be used to create a compost tea, which is rich in nutrients and beneficial microorganisms. Simply mix the compost with water and let it steep for a few days before using it as a natural fertilizer.
Buy a smaller seedling when buying a shade tree: To avoid transplant shock, it’s better to buy a smaller seedling when planting a shade tree. The tree will establish itself more quickly and will require less watering and maintenance.
Water your garden daily and feed your plants with a general purpose fertilizer or one specific to their needs: Watering your plants daily will help them thrive, but make sure not to overwater them. Fertilizing them will provide the necessary nutrients for optimal growth, but make sure to choose the right type of fertilizer for the plant’s specific needs.
Discourage garden pests of the rodent variety by using bits of accumulated pet hair near the base of the plants being bothered: Rodents like squirrels and rabbits can be deterred by placing bits of pet hair near the base of the plants they are bothering. The scent of the pet will scare them away.
Certain plants are very tolerant of dry conditions and do not require much water, including alyssum, cosmos, hebe, lavender, rosemary, sedum, and veronica. If you live in a dry area or want to conserve water, consider planting these types of plants instead of those that require a lot of watering.
Composting is an eco-friendly way to reduce waste and enrich soil, but don’t let the unfounded myths deter you from trying it. Composting is easy, odorless, and doesn’t require a lot of space or technical knowledge. Follow the tips on composting and gardening to build the ultimate compost pile and achieve a thriving garden.
Can I compost meat and dairy?
No, meat, dairy, and fatty foods should not be composted as they attract pests and can produce odors.
How long does it take for compost to be ready?
Compost can take anywhere from a few weeks to several months to be ready, depending on the conditions and the mix of organic matter used.
Can I use compost in indoor plants?
Yes, you can use compost as a natural fertilizer for indoor plants, but make sure to use it sparingly and mix it with potting soil.
Can I compost cardboard and paper?
Yes, cardboard and paper can be composted, but make sure to shred them before adding them to the compost pile to speed up the decomposition process.
Can I compost pet waste?
No, pet waste should not be composted as it can contain harmful pathogens and bacteria that can contaminate the compost.