Compost is organic matter after it has been decomposed. Combining compost with soil will improve the soil’s nutrients and helps the growth of microbes in the soil which aids the growth of plants. Organic materials like leaves, vegetable and fruit peels can be recycled through a natural process called composting; this method makes the soil fertile. Compost can be used for a home garden or a peat compost; homemade compost can be made using Compost Bin HQ. To know when the compost is ready to use is a common question, says an expert at www.planetnatural.com. When it becomes crumbly, brown and dark, then it is available for use. Moreover, the materials used for making compost should not be visible in the pile of the finished compost. After the compost has completed degrading, you should allow it to decompose for another 3 weeks at least.
Benefits of compost:
Finished compost will have reduced in its volume due to the breakdown of the biochemicals to about half of what went into the pile. The finished compost has a lot of benefits to the soil.
Improves the quality of the soil: Any sort of soil will see an improvement in its nutritional value with the use of compost. The compost acts as a conditioner to the soil and improves the texture as well as the structure of the soil. The soil can retain moisture and nutrients better which helps the plants grow.
Improves soil structure: Soil contains inorganic matter like sand, clay and silt which when mixed with compost and humus forms the soil structure. The soil’s structure is considered useful when it is crumbly, has some moisture, and drains water well. When compost is added to the soil, its structure improves and helps in better penetration of air and holds moisture better. All this allows roots to have a better grip the soil.
Gives nutrients to soil: Compost adds nutrients to your soil which is needed for the growth of plants. Apart from nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium, it also produces micronutrients like manganese, iron, copper and zinc. All these micronutrients are needed by the plants to be able to get the nutrients. A fertiliser which is used to enhance the soil’s quality will not have the micronutrients and hence is less beneficial when you need to boost the nutrients in the soil.
Compost attracts beneficial insects: When compost is used in your garden, it attracts earthworms and other useful insects as the compost is a healthy source of food for them. Due to the presence of earthworms, redworms and other critters, the organic material breaks down and releases nutrients. Soil treated with compost will have plants which have fewer pests. They also control diseases in plants as well as a fight against insects that may cause a widespread attack on plants. A plant grown in healthy compost is less likely to face attacks from pests.
Nutritious food for us: Plants which are grown using a good compost rich in nutrients and minerals taste great. Apart from the taste, they provide vitamin and mineral-rich produce, which means healthier food.