It’s not always easy to be green, especially when you live in an apartment. You might not have room for a garden or the ability to keep a compost pile. But there are still ways to compost without taking up too much space or violating your lease. This step-by-step guide will show you how to compost using just a small container and some common household items.
What Is Composting?
Composting is the process of breaking down organic matter (such as plant and food scraps) into rich, fertile soil. This process naturally occurs in nature when dead plants decompose in a warm, oxygen-rich environment.
When you compost, you’re just speeding up this natural process so that it happens more quickly than it would on its own in nature. You can then use this soil to fertilize your kitchen garden or the indoor plants.
Why Should You Do It
Composting is a great way to reduce the amount of waste that gets sent to landfills every year. Non-decomposable materials like plastic and metals will still be around long after your death, which means they’ll still be adding to our already staggering landfilling problems.
Composting on the other hand, is a natural process that returns to the earth what we took from it. You can use the compost you create to nourish your garden and grow healthier plants.
If this isn’t enough, once you get started with composting, you’ll find that it’s extremely easy and efficient.
How to Compost in an Apartment?
Some people often avoid composting inside a small space such as an apartment because they are afraid that it might smell. However, in reality, composting is a natural process which absorbs your kitchen scraps and turns them into rich, earthy-smelling compost.
The reason the kitchen trash bin smells is because you are mixing both organic and inorganic substances. By doing so, you are disrupting the decomposition process which results in the smell.
Whereas, the composting bin only has organic material such as vegetable scraps and paper etc.
To start the process of composting in an apartment, you need to:
1. Find out what components can be used in composting and in what proportion they should appear in the mixture. Avoid using meat and dairy products. These are organic but can result in a foul-smelling odour. Stick to vegetable and fruit scraps.
2. Acquire the appropriate composting bin preferably with the lid for your apartment.
3. Gather all the necessary items needed to start composting, e.g.: vegetable scraps, paper, etc.
4. Start Layering; start with a layer of soil, then a layer of kitchen waste, then some dried leaves, add a layer of worms, and lastly, another layer of soil.
5. Set up the bin in a dark and dry place.
6. Let the compost ferment for at least two weeks.
7. Add water after two weeks, if needed
8. Wait for your compost to turn into rich soil that can be used in your garden or potted plants!
Compostable And Non-Compostable Materials
Now that you know how to compost, let’s get started on figuring out the waste you can compost. Type of waste or materials can be divided into two types: dry and green. The first includes dried leaves, paper, cardboard, twigs or branches. The second is made up of food scraps (fruits, vegetables), grass clippings, fresh leaves, and straw.
How To Speed Up Compost?
There are many ways to speed up the process of composting, but the most effective way is to turn it. During a shorter period of time, you need to turn the compost every day or few times a week for best results.
Moreover, worms are often used to speed the process. Heat also acts as a catalyst , so the process happens faster and takes much less time.
So whether you’re looking for a way to reduce your carbon footprint or just want some free fertilizer for
your garden, apartment composting is the way to go!