What is composting, and how does it differ from other recycling methods? Composting transforms your food scraps and garbage into soil beneficial to your plants.
Organic matter is recycled and transformed into a nutrient-rich soil supplement to speed up and manage nature’s breakdown process. In a way, it’s like “reincarnation,” if you will.
Which Composting System For a Small Garden?
What are the things you must consider when Composting?
Composting can quickly become a part of your everyday routine if you keep these ideas in mind. Outdoor composting systems should be placed in places with sufficient sunlight and easy access to water. While you do not want to dry out the composting material entirely, adding heat from the sun accelerates the process. It would be best if you kept an eye on the following when composting:
Grinding, chipping, and shredding materials increase the surface area for bacteria to feed on. Additionally, smaller particles help maintain optimal composting temperatures by creating a more homogeneous compost mixture and increasing pile insulation. However, if the particles are too fine, they may obstruct airflow.
Level of Moisture
Microorganisms that live in compost require a specific level of moisture to survive. Microorganisms can access the nutrients contained in organic matter because water aids in the chemical transport across the compost pile. Moisture is found in varying degrees in organic matter, but it can also be introduced by rainfall or intentional irrigation.
Flow of Oxygen
Aerating a pile is made more accessible by turning it, putting it on a system of pipes, or adding bulking agents like wood chips and shredded newspaper. Decomposition proceeds more quickly under aerobic settings than under anaerobic ones. Composting might be slowed or halted if the pile becomes too dry or exposed to too much oxygen.
Microorganisms prefer a small temperature range for optimal activity. When compost is cooked to a specified temperature, pathogens and weed seeds are killed. Due to microbial activity, temperatures in the pile’s core can reach at least 140° F.
What are the different ways of Composting?
Environmental System Research says that composting is one of the most effective waste management mechanisms. Here is a list of some of the most applicable for small gardens.
It is an excellent choice for city dwellers who have limited room outside. It’s also ideal for individuals who produce a lot of rubbish or have a lot of yard debris to dispose of.
You can easily move the tumbler around your yard because it is a cylinder drum that stands on its legs. A handle on the side of the drum allows you to effortlessly rotate the drum and mix the garbage you put in it.
Compost is created by feeding leftover food, yard clippings, and other organic garbage to red worms in bins. Worm castings are created when worms break this material down into high-quality compost. Worm bins can be constructed from scratch or purchased pre-assembled. Up to 800,000 mature worms (about 800,000) can devour organic material each day. You can utilize bins of varied sizes to accommodate the volume of food scraps required to manufacture castings.
Even if you don’t have a lot of waste, you can still compost it with the help of an electric waste management system.
Natural decomposition is facilitated by heating your garbage to speed up the process. Composting organic waste in an enclosed bin heated by electricity is used. You don’t need much space, and you may use waste materials using an indoor method.
How to choose the best Compost Method for you?
The United States Environmental Protection Agency said that you could reduce the impact of food waste when you learn waste management like composting. Finding the optimum compost method is not always an easy task. Before deciding on the procedure best suited to your needs, look at several things.
Consider the place you live in.
Because of the lack of outdoor space in many cities, you may have to think about reducing the amount of area you have for composting. If you reside in an area with a lot of open space, it is possible to employ other composting methods that require more space in rural areas, such as backyards or gardens.
Consider the type of waste you have.
Composting techniques vary according to the type of waste you have. You may need to use a composting method that utilizes waste other than yard waste or organic food scraps if you only have those on hand.
Consider the amount of weight you have.
Consider a way to start composting if you are a single person and don’t produce a lot of food waste. To keep up with daily or weekly trash production, you’ll need a technique of composting that allows continuous garbage additions without halting the composting process.
How to choose the right Garden Composter for you?
Choosing the right garden composter is one of the most crucial aspects of composting.
It is critical to clarify that you are permitted to have a compost bin with your local zoning restrictions, municipal ordinances, and any HOA rules and regulations before selecting where it will go and how much space it will take up in your garden.
Here are some garden composters we reviewed to understand how each kind of composter works for gardens.
The Miracle-Gro Small Composter is a compact outdoor compost bin with a single chamber and 27.7-gallon capacity.
This compost bin has only 27.7 gallons or 105 liters of volume capacity, which is why it is an excellent choice if you have a tight space on your garden, balcony, patio, porch, or rooftop.
This compost bin is also time, space, and cost-efficient. It saves space in your home but helps you compost tons of food waste every day and turn them into food for your loan.
- Its highly durable design ensures that it is sealed tightly as you use it with heavy load composting.
- You never need to worry about harmful toxins because it is BPA-free, food-grade, and has UV-protected plastic designed for heavy-duty composting.
- It will help you transform your food waste into rich and fertile compost that can help enrich your loan.
- It is still relatively small for houses that produce more food waste.
- Although it is tightly sealed, you might unconsciously reach its capacity, which can cause the clips to fail in holding the panel that seals the composter.
The Worm Factory 360 Black Composting System is a US-made composting bin with tray layers for high-capacity composting.
It is a vermicomposter with each tray housing thousands of worms to help you manage your daily food waste. It is a loop process where you add and replace tray after tray when it gets full.
Worms can eat as much as half of their weight. So, each day, worms decrease your food waste by half of their weight as you keep on adding to your composter. If you have ½ lb of worms in your composer, they can eat 1/4lb of food waste every day.
- You can add two more layers if you have more food waste at home.
- It has an odor-free operation, so you do not have to worry about the foul smell that composting might cause in your home.
- Its expandable capacity through adding trays allows you to decompose your food waste all year round.
- It has a convenient and continuous process of adding trays, which saves time in the long run.
- Each tray has a limited capacity, and six to four trays might not be enough if you have a big family that produces a more significant amount of food waste each day.
- Worms might climb up and out of the food tray when the trays get full, creating more significant sanitary problems.
- If you are a busy person, you might find it inconvenient to harvest each tray, clean it, and get it back on the stack to keep the loop.
The Vivosun Outdoor Tumbling Composter is a Dual Rotating Batch Compost Bin made of alloy steel. It has a 43-gallon capacity and allows you to turn your compost without mixing or digging in.
It is composed of two chambers, the one that mixes the food waste while the other continuously holds the organic materials you are adding.
- Its double chamber helps make the composting fast and efficient by making it easy to mix and compress the waste in the chamber as you add the new batches of organic waste.
- It has adjustable air vents that keep proper air circulation inside the composter.
- It is made of galvanized steel and high-quality plastic that is corrosion-resistant, weather-resistant, sturdy, and durable.
- It is quite uneasy to assemble this composter because it has many screws and components that you will need to put together.
- It isn’t easy to keep the center divider in place while assembling the composter. You will need another person to assist you in holding the components in place along the process.
- There is no lock or spinning break to stop it from spinning during loading and unloading.
This worm farm compost bin, known as the Hungry bin, fits indoor and outdoor use and has a 20-gallon capacity.
It uses patent flow-through technology to compost your food waste continuously. The hungry bin can process 4.4 lbs or two kilos of organic waste every day. The design of this compost bin is highly durable and made to last for years.
- The Hungry Bin is made up of up to 15% recycled materials, and it comes in a food-grade stability package with food-grade polypropylene with organic colorants.
- It creates the highest quality of worm casting and worm tea simultaneously.
- It does not have an odor and does not attract flies and insects, so you can put it near your door.
- This compost bin is high, making it difficult for the air to flow in full circulation. The air cannot easily reach and pass the bottom of the bin.
- Although it is high, worms can still climb up and escape the lid.
- The hungry bin is a big investment and requires a significant budget.
The SUBPOD Compost bin is our favorite. It has a dual-chamber design with a composting system and a worm farm. You can use it both indoors and outdoors.
Every week, it can process 33 lbs or 15 kilos of food and organic waste. It has two chambers that allow 360 ventilation below its lid to ensure that the air is cycling properly in our system. This way, you can make composting more efficient for you.
- This compost bin is pest-proof and odor-free.
- It does not only use worms; it also uses microbes to boost the composting process.
- It helps in enriching your soil and growing organic food.
- Mostly, worms and microbes are not included in your SUBPOD Compost Bin package.
- Its weekly composting capacity is significantly lower than those who presented their daily capacity.
- It is hard to assemble alone, and you might need assistance to assemble and operate this compost bin.
You can find a composting method that works for you no matter where you live. You and your waste can benefit most from one of the many composting options available.
As a final suggestion, I recommend looking into local community gardens. Composting programs in many homes and businesses are happy to accept food scraps and other organic waste from your yard and kitchen.
Your city’s bio-waste collection program may pick up biodegradable waste so that you can place your compostable material on the street for collection.
Your garden will be delighted when you start composting. Your friends may even send you their unwanted food scraps to celebrate your new hobby.