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For A Greener Garden: COMPOST!

Compost (a soil amendment) is the product that comes from the controlled decomposition of organic material such as leaves, grass clippings, brush and yard trimmings. As the material decomposes, it generates heat that sanitizes the material and makes it beneficial for plant growth. Compost is an organic material that has the unique ability to improve the chemical, physical and biological characteristics of soils and growing media. It contains plant nutrients but is typically not characterized as a fertilizer.

Composting is Mother Nature’s way of recycling old scraps into a beneficial meal for your garden. Your compost pile is the true hero in green gardening. By collecting grass clippings, fruit and vegetable trimmings and leaves, gardeners can create their own compost and give their garden a free, healthy, enriching treat. Composting your organic scraps also helps cut down on waste entering the landfill, which creates methane, a potent greenhouse gas.

In addition to providing a nutrient boost to soil and increasing organic matter, compost also helps combat plant disease and enriches the soil naturally.

When adding material to your compost pile, be sure to have an equal amount of “brown stuff” (carbon) and “green stuff” (nitrogen). Nitrogen is the heating agent for your compost pile and gets the materials cooking, while carbon helps break the materials down.

An easy way to collect compostable materials is to look at everyday life and see what gets thrown away. Organic materials that are not animal based can be put in the compost pile. Such items include:

  • Egg shells
  • Coffee grounds
  • Fruit and vegetable trimmings
  • Leaves
  • Grass clippings
  • Old plants

Beginning a compost pile is quite simple. Home-composters can simply put all compostable materials in a pile outside or keep compost ready materials in a container. Be sure to cut or break up all fruit and vegetable trimmings before including them in your compost pile. This will help them break down quicker and further deter critters who do not belong.

To maintain your compost pile, regularly add an equal amount of brown and green material. Turn your pile every 10 days or so by raking through it with a shovel or pitch fork. Remember to stop adding material to your pile after a while to give it time to break down.

When it is time to plant, incorporate finished compost into your garden for a healthier and greener garden!

If you don’t have time to create your own compost for your garden, please call on St. Louis Composting for all your compost and soil needs.

St. Louis Composting is the region’s leading compost producer, producing STA- Certified, OMRI Listed Compost for organic gardening. Pick it up from one of our six locations in Missouri and Illinois or have it delivered right to your home! Call us at 636-861-3344 or visit us at stlcompost.com.

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