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Last Updated on:  12/16/2015 04:00 PM



 
Joy Blooms in the Garden

Joy Blooms  -- Compost It

Everything you ever wanted to know about composting:  Let's get Started   
Basic How-To    Tip & Tricks
    FAQ     Build a Bin     What's In?     Brown & Green    
Now What?     What's went Wrong    Unusual Compost Items      Say It Ain't So     
Composting Learning Resources & Supplies


Last Edited on:  12/16/2015 08:07 AM


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OK, It's Done -- Now What?

Now that your compost is done, you have successfully recycled organic waste. You have made an environmentally-friendly alternative to chemical fertilizers.  Congratulations!
Remember compost is not a soil; it is a soil amendment.  When mix with soil, it adds much appreciated microbes, organic materials, and nutrients.  A good rule of thumb is to mix one-part compost to three-parts soil. There are many uses for compost in the garden - flowerbeds, vegetable gardens, and lawns.
 
Use Compost as a Soil Enrichment:

  • Flower beds --  add about an 1" in establish bed and 1"-2" of compost in new beds and work into the soil.  Don't skip the next step which is to water thoroughly.  Your perennials, biennials and annuals will be happy and produce well for you.
  • Lawn topdressing -- although compost may be applied on the lawn at any time, the results come when it is applied after the lawn has be aerated.  A thin layer is generally sufficient.  Again, water thoroughly. 
 
Use Compost when Planting
  • Tree planting -- mix one-part compost to three-parts soil removed from the planting hole.  Use this mixture as a backfill around the root ball.  Again thoroughly water the newly planted tree.
  • Vegetable gardens -- depending on the quality of your soil, add about 1" - 2" of compost before you begin planting.  Turn soil to a depth of 5" of so.   With vegetable, more is not better.  Compost is high in nitrogen.  Vegetables don't produce well is the soil has excessively high levels of nitrogen. 
 
As a Mulch
  • Mulch -- compost is an excellent mulch for flowering & landscape plants.  A disadvantage of using compost as mulch is that finely textured composts will not suppress weeds as well as more coarsely textured mulch. It is better to use compost to gradually improve the soil by applying between the plants for an added boost of nutrition.
 
Make a Nutrient-Rich Liquid Fertilizer
  • Compost tea --  compost tea is a good benefit for your plants and it's easy to make.  The ratio is basically one-part compost to five-parts water.  Tie compost in a bandana or put in a cloth bag and place in a container of water. Be sure to complete submerge the "compost tea bag."  Put the container in your garage or a shaded location.    Let it "steep"  for a week or so.   The compost tea can be poured over your indoor or garden plants.  Ailing plants can get a boost from "tea."  The contents of the "tea bag" can be tossed back into the compost or emptied in your garden.

An alternative method for making compost tea is to put a shovelful of compost into a 5-gallon bucket of water.  Let this mixture seep of about a week.   Then drain off the liquid.   Dilute one-part of this liquid strong-tea with two-parts water.  The diluted tea can be used to water indoor or outdoor plants.

Soaking the bag in a barrel or bucket of rainwater for three days is even better.

 
As a Substitute for Peat Moss
  • Potting Soil -- make your own potting soil for seedlings by mixing two-parts compost to three-parts soil.
  • Indoor plants: Add small portions of compost to the surface of indoor plant pots. Over time the compost will break down.  Your plants will appreciate the added nutrition as the compost continues to decompose.

Joy Blooms . . . Compost It!

Everything you ever wanted to know about composting:  Let's get Started   
Basic How-To    Tip & Tricks
    FAQ     Build a Bin     What's In?     Brown & Green    
Now What?     What's went Wrong    Unusual Compost Items      Say It Ain't So     


Further Composting Information Internet Links:

Joy Blooms . . . in the garden!

Gardening in Lubbock    Month-by-Month   Out Door Projects    Butterfly Gardens     It's for the Birds    Gardening Lessons from Daddy       
        Compost It!     Gardening Tips /Design     Veggies Anyone?    Gardening Links       Seed/Bulb Resources  My Garden Photo Albums


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