Creating and using compost from your organic waste
is a natural way to fertilize your garden and build healthy
- When you start using compost, soil holds water better and
discourages weeds. Your gardens and lawns become less dependent on
chemicals and become more nutrient-rich.
- It's also a great way to cut your weekly garbage load almost in
half and help reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the
- Healthy composted soil will help your plants stay healthy and
help keep water in the soil.
What are the basic steps to
- Organic material is divided in to "Greens" (nitrogen rich) and
"Browns" (carbon rich). Green materials are usually moist like your
fruit and veggie scraps, fresh grass clippings or fresh fallen
leaves. Brown materials are dried like dry brown leaves or dry
- You will need to add one-part greens for every part of browns
to build a balanced compost heap. It is recommended by some that
you layer your greens and browns. However, as long as the ratio is
one-part green materials to one- part brown materials, it is not
necessary to layer the material as you will be turning the pile
mixing these two types of materials anyhow.
- Add water. Effective composting requires moisture. Add water
when you first start your compost pile and each time you turn your
pile. The compost pile should be as moist as a wrung out sponge to
be composting effectively.
- Turn your pile with a compost aerating tool, pitchfork or
shovel every couple of weeks during the growing season to provide
an adequate air supply.
When is it ready?
Your composted material is ready to use when it has
an "earthy" smell
How do I use compost?
Compost is not a soil. It is a soil amendment that
will add organic matter, microbes and nutrients to your soil.
Typically the ratio for use is one-part compost to three - parts
Check out our demonstration
With the support of volunteers, the CBC Do-Crew,
and a grant from TD Friends of the Environment, three large-size
demonstration compost bins were constructed in an education
workshop in 2014. These were built in the demonstration and
teaching garden right behind our office. Additional water wise
modifications have also been completed, such as redirecting
downspouts for use with rain barrels, installing a 1000 litre
rainwater tank installed and building a rain garden. Come down and
see our garden.