3 Ways to get started composting

Let’s talk about composting.  For many new gardeners, the concept of composting can be a little intimidating or the pictures in their mind is a big stinky pile that attracts vermin.  Well, that is not necessarily the truth.  There are many different ways to compost, and in this article, we will identify a few.  When it comes to gardening in an urban area, the regular compost pile is not going to cut it.  We don’t have the extra space necessary for that.  So here a few ways you can compost in an urban setting and help save the planet one banana peel at a time:

  • Bokashi- Japanese style of composting.  Bokashi uses microbe, and lactic acid inoculated bran to preferment waste.  After going through the bokashi composting system, you can add the food scraps directly to the gardening area.  Just wait a week or two before planting.  This time should give the contents enough time to breakdown before planting. This process can be done inside, outside, or wherever you like.  Since it is an anaerobic process, the microbes produced will help eliminate the smell and fruit fly issues. Read more about Bokashi Composting here.

  •  In garden Composting- One of the easiest ways to get started.  Wherever you are gardening, in a container or a bed, dig a trench or hole and bury your food waste.  Do not plant in this particular area but allow the waste to breakdown.  If you are growing in containers, try burying the scraps during the winter,  allowing them to decompose over the winter.

  • Vermicomposting-  A style of composting that can also be done in a home, small space, or balcony.  Vermicomposting uses Red Wiggler or composting worms,  which can eat half their body weight in organic material daily. As the worms eat the food scraps, they are digested and then excreted in a rich, natural product called castings. Castings are a hummus-material that contains high saturation of nutrients, microbes, enzymes, phosphorus, nitrogen, potassium, magnesium, and hormones.

These are three ways to get started composting and can be done in relatively small spaces.  Remember, there is no one size fits all when it comes to composting. There are many different options to fit your lifestyle and space. Try them out and see which one feels the most natural to you.  Like everything about gardening, there will be a learning curve but stick with it, and you will be composting and saving the planet in no time.

How do you compost?

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