Starting a compost pile in your backyard is an easy way to reduce the amount of waste in your home, and the amount of waste going into your local landfill. This is a basic guideline for starting your own compost for yard and food waste, and what you should expect throughout the process.
Constructing your backyard compost:
1. To build a compost pile like the one featured in this video, you should start with bare earth. Starting the pile on grass or plants will only kill the existing foliage. When first starting your compost you should layer the materials, alternating between moist and dry substances, but after several layers you can start mixing everything together. Moist substances include things like bread or fruit peels, while dry substances are materials such as sticks or dried leaves.
2. For rapid decomposition, you should turn your compost pile with a pitch fork or shovel to add oxygen to the materials. The pile should also be kept slightly moist, but typically rain water will do the trick unless your area experiences dry spells.
3. After your compost is finished, it can be used as soil fertilizer for your garden. It is a great way to add nutrients to the existing mulch. Consider making your own compost to help naturally dispose of items that can take up space in a landfill.
Rumpke offers separate yard waste collection in some communities
About the Author: Sarah Mattina is the summer 2014 corporate communications intern at Rumpke.