Creating Sustainable Compost: What to Include

Hey there, eco-conscious folks! If you’re passionate about sustainable development and taking steps to reduce waste, you’ve probably considered starting a compost pile. Composting is not only great for the environment, but it’s also a fantastic way to enrich your garden’s soil. So, let’s dive into what you should put in your composter for optimal results.

The Building Blocks of Compost

Composting is essentially a process of converting organic materials into nutrient-rich, dark, crumbly soil conditioner. To create successful compost, you need the right mix of ingredients. Let’s break it down:

Greens and Browns

The magic combination in composting is the balance between “greens” and “browns.”

  • Greens: These are nitrogen-rich materials like kitchen scraps, coffee grounds, and fresh yard waste. They provide protein for the microorganisms that break down your compost.
  • Browns: These are carbon-rich materials like dried leaves, straw, and newspaper. Browns provide energy for those microorganisms.

Air and Water

For the decomposition process to happen efficiently, microorganisms need both air and water. Ensure that your compost pile is well-aerated and maintains the consistency of a damp sponge. Turning your compost occasionally helps mix the materials and introduce oxygen.

What to Put In

Now that we’ve covered the basics let’s talk about what specific items you can toss into your compost bin.

Kitchen Scraps

  1. Fruit and Vegetable Peels: Don’t toss those carrot peels or apple cores. They’re excellent compost material.
  2. Coffee Grounds: Used coffee grounds are a rich source of nitrogen. Learn more about recycling coffee grounds in compost.
  3. Eggshells: Crushed eggshells add calcium to your compost.

Yard Waste

  1. Grass Clippings: After mowing your lawn, those grass clippings can go right into the compost.
  2. Leaves: Dried leaves provide essential carbon.
  3. Weeds (without seeds): Be cautious with this one. Weeds can be composted, but make sure they haven’t gone to seed, or you’ll be nurturing new weeds in your compost. Read about best practices for composting weeds.

Paper and Cardboard

  1. Newspaper: Shred it before adding it to your compost.
  2. Cardboard: Cardboard breaks down more slowly, so cut it into smaller pieces or soak it before composting.

Wood and Sawdust

  1. Wood Chips and Sawdust: These can be composted in moderation, but they’re high in carbon, so balance them with nitrogen-rich materials.

Natural Fibers

  1. Cotton and Wool: Old cotton and wool clothing, as long as they’re natural and not blended with synthetic fibers, can be composted.

Stale Bread and Pasta

  1. Bread and Pasta: Stale or moldy bread and pasta can also find a new purpose in your compost bin.

Natural Materials

  1. Hair and Fur: Whether it’s pet hair or human hair, it’s compostable.
  2. Wooden Toothpicks and Matches: These small wooden items are suitable for composting.

Small Yard Debris

  1. Twigs and Small Branches: Chop them into small pieces to help with decomposition.


  1. Animal Manure: If you have access to well-aged animal manure (not from carnivores), it can be a valuable addition to your compost.

What to Avoid

While many items can be composted, some should be kept out of your compost bin:

  • Meat and Dairy: These can attract pests and create odors.
  • Oily or Greasy Foods: Fats and oils can slow down the composting process.
  • Diseased Plants: If your plants have diseases, it’s best not to compost them to avoid spreading the disease.
  • Pet Waste: Pet waste may contain harmful pathogens.
  • Synthetic Materials: Plastics, rubber, and anything synthetic should never be composted.

Tips for Successful Composting

To make your composting efforts even more successful, keep these tips in mind:

  1. Size Matters: Chop or shred materials into smaller pieces. Smaller particles decompose faster.
  2. Layer It: Alternate between layers of greens and browns to maintain that essential balance.
  3. Stay Moist but Not Soggy: Keep your compost pile as moist as a wrung-out sponge. If it gets too wet, add more browns; if too dry, add more greens.
  4. Aerate Regularly: Turn your compost pile every few weeks to introduce oxygen.
  5. Patience Is a Virtue: Composting takes time. Depending on various factors, you can expect finished compost in a few months to a year.
  6. Use Finished Compost: Once your compost is dark, crumbly, and earthy-smelling, it’s ready to be used to enrich your garden soil.

Closing Thoughts

Composting is a fantastic way to reduce waste, enrich your garden, and contribute to sustainable development. By knowing what to put in your composter and following a few simple guidelines, you can turn your kitchen and yard waste into nutrient-rich compost that will benefit both your plants and the environment. Happy composting! 🌱

What Is Sustainable Gardening and Why Is It Important?

What Is Sustainable Gardening and Why Is It Important?

Gardening is a very popular hobby for many people, and it’s easy to see why. Not only does gardening provide an opportunity to connect with nature, but it also allows individuals to grow their own food, beautify their surroundings, and improve the overall health of the planet. However, traditional gardening practices can often have negative impacts on the environment, such as excessive water use, soil degradation, and the use of harmful chemicals. Sustainable gardening aims to mitigate these impacts and create a more eco-friendly approach to growing plants. In this article, we’ll explore what sustainable gardening is, why it’s important, and how you can implement sustainable gardening practices in your own backyard.

What is Sustainable Gardening?

What is Sustainable Gardening?Sustainable gardening is a set of practices and principles that aim to reduce the environmental impact of traditional gardening practices. This includes using resources such as water and fertilizer more efficiently, reducing waste, and promoting biodiversity. Sustainable gardening is based on the principles of ecology, which recognizes that everything in the natural world is interconnected and that actions in one part of the ecosystem can have ripple effects throughout the whole system.

Why is Sustainable Gardening Important?

Sustainable gardening is important for a number of reasons. First and foremost, it helps to mitigate the negative impacts that traditional gardening practices can have on the environment. For example, using excessive amounts of water and fertilizer can lead to water pollution and soil degradation, which can have long-lasting effects on the health of the ecosystem. Additionally, sustainable gardening practices can help to promote biodiversity by creating habitats for beneficial insects and animals, such as bees and butterflies.

Sustainable gardening can also benefit human health by reducing exposure to harmful chemicals and pesticides. When pesticides and other chemicals are used in traditional gardening practices, they can seep into the soil and water supply, potentially harming both wildlife and human health. By using natural methods to control pests and promote plant growth, sustainable gardening practices can create a safer and healthier environment for everyone.

How to Implement Sustainable Gardening Practices

How to Implement Sustainable Gardening PracticesImplementing sustainable gardening practices in your own backyard is easier than you might think. Below you willl find some tips to help you get started:

Use native plants: Native plants are adapted to the local climate and soil conditions, which means they will require less water and fertilizer than non-native plants. They also provide habitat for local wildlife, which can help to promote biodiversity.

Compost: Composting is an effective way of reducing waste and produce nutrient-rich soil for your plants. You can compost a variety of materials, including food scraps, yard waste, and even shredded newspaper.

Go for natural pest control methods: Instead of using dangeroud chemicals to control pests, try using natural methods such as companion planting, insect-repelling plants, and biological controls like ladybugs and praying mantises.

Conserve water: Water is a precious resource, so it’s critical to use it wisely in the garden. Consider using a rain barrel to collect rainwater for watering your plants, and use drought-tolerant plants that require less water.

Avoid synthetic fertilizers: Synthetic fertilizers can be harmful to the environment and can contribute to water pollution. Instead, use natural fertilizers like compost, worm castings, and bone meal.

By implementing these sustainable gardening practices, you can create a beautiful and eco-friendly garden that benefits both the environment and your own health and well-being.


Sustainable gardening is an important practice for all those who truly care about the environment and want to reduce its impact on the planet. By using natural methods to promote plant growth, reduce waste, and conserve resources, we can, together, create a more sustainable future for ourselves and future generations. Whether you’re an experienced gardener or just starting out, there are many simple and effective ways to implement sustainable gardening practices in your own backyard. By following these steps, you can create a beautiful and sustainable outdoor space.




Sustainable Gardening Tips for Every Gardener

Gardening is not always green or environmentally friendly, even if it is part of the green movement. It is sometimes seen as a process of doing your part to help and give back to Mother Earth what you have received. Sustainable gardening helps to maintain the health of your garden and the environment in which you grow your vegetables and fruit.
You may be wondering what a sustainable garden is, to put it simply, a garden that works in harmony with nature. There are many techniques that can improve the health of your garden and minimize any negative impact on the environment.

There are many benefits you can reap from a sustainable garden. Grow food, you want to eat, so you are motivated to keep growing, to grow economically, to make it worthwhile and to make taking care of health and environmental issues a great benefit of sustainable gardening. Not to mention the environmental benefit that the soil will continue to support the cultivation of healthy plants.

Choosing the right plants for your needs can be difficult, especially since you have to consider the limitations or requirements of the space in which you plan to grow your sustainable garden. You should try to find the most appropriate plants that will meet your needs throughout the year and limit your choices to those plants.

You need to keep these tips in mind to get the most out of your sustainable garden:

* Remove all weeds from the garden area before planting and during the growing season.
* Preparing the growing area for ideal plant growth
* Water only the root zone of the plants.
* Cultivate plants in a protected environment for a quick, healthy and solid start.
* Harvest all plants at maturity to avoid letting pests and diseases multiply.

Here are some ideas of plants you should consider in your sustainable garden:


It would be considered a summer vegetable when you grow it in your garden, but you can also grow it indoors and it will give you a year-round supply. Lettuce is an excellent vegetable, especially the many new varieties that can be picked indiscriminately and continue to grow.


Potatoes are excellent to eat because they are a source of carbohydrates and can grow for at least nine months of the year. If you store your potatoes in a cool, dry but dark place, you should be able to keep them in storage for most of the year.


It is an excellent vegetable that you can grow all year round, but if your area is too cold to support them during the winter, you can blanch and freeze them.


Onions are an excellent option for the self-sufficient garden of the house. They keep very well and are excellent producers.

Apple tree

It is a great choice and a source of winter fruits. The advantage of apple trees is that they produce fruit in abundance. If you take care of your apple trees, you can also have apples for most of the year.


You should definitely take tomatoes because they are the best vegetables that the self-sufficient gardener can grow. They are delicious during the summer months and you can easily grow enough to keep them in the cooler months.


There are many types of beans, which can be grown for almost six months of the year. Beans are an excellent vegetable that whitens and freezes easily during the winter months.

I hope these tips will help you plan your own sustainable garden. You’ll have fun while stocking your shelves with quality vegetables. It really is a win-win situation.

Happy gardening!