Want to produce a healthy and nutrient-rich garden? Try creating your own compost to improve the soil health of your garden. Here are some important tips necessary for good compost, provided by County Agent Sarah Bertrand from the Louisiana State University AgCenter in Jefferson Parish, La.:
- Good compost requires two main components, materials high in carbon and materials high in nitrogen. Fill your compost with plenty of the “browns,” carbon rich materials such as paper, coffee filters, wood chips and leaves. Then recycle your “greens,” food waste, coffee and grass clippings to provide nitrogen in the compost.
- Steer clear of adding any fats, oils, bones or diseased plant material to your compost bin. These materials will make your bin smell and attract animals. Avoid grass or other plants that have been sprayed with herbicide.
- Mix the compost pile often to increase oxygen supply. If you recycle food waste, cut the food into small pieces. Both of these actions will aid in a faster decomposition process.
- Place your compost pile into a container with holes to provide air flow. Remember to keep the bin covered to prevent wildlife from digging into your soil.
- Get your children involved by encouraging them to pick out the “brown” and “green” materials to add to the compost pile.