The Q&A Archives: Composting

Question: This year is the first I am going to make compost. Is there a certain ingredient that I have to mix the compost with before it goes in my garden? I'm not too sure what that ingredient has to be nor what the best is.

Answer: Usually, compost is made with a combination of nitrogen rich or "green" material such as fresh grass clippings or fresh manure added to a carbon rich or "brown" material such as fallen leaves or stable bedding such as straw or even wood shavings. Gardeners use many different ingredients depending on what is available, and some people may add a small amount of garden soil to the mix as well. This mixture is then kept slightly moist and will rot down over time. Turning it or remixing it periodically will help it to rot faster. When the original materials are no longer recognizable, then it can be used in the garden. Some gardeners may prefer to use a compost "activator" but it is not necessary to do so if you have used a mixture of ingredients as described above.

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