Start Composting on Earth Day April 22

The best day of the year to start a composting program in your home, school or workplace is April 22. This is Earth Day, when we all show our support for environmental protection. Collecting organic trash and composting it helps the environment in many ways. And it’s easy to do! When you toss an apple core into the trash, it gets mixed in with all the other trash. In a few days, you have a stinky mess in a sealed plastic bag for the trash collector to pick up. The trash is either incinerated or put into a landfill. Burning mixed trash creates toxic gasses, and the resulting ash is handled as toxic waste. Landfills produce methane, a greenhouse gas. And landfills eventually come back to haunt us. If you put that same apple core into a composting

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How to Get Your Worm Composting Bin Ready in the Spring

compost in greenhouse

As Spring approaches, your vermicomposting bin will start to need some attention. Take a look inside your compost bin. You should see dark, crumbly “dirt” – this is worm castings. It’s the perfect fertilizer for your plants. Here are the steps you should take to get your vermicomposting bin ready in the Spring. Time It Dig around. If you see a significant amount of undigested scraps in the bin, you may need to give your worms more time to break things down. This is especially true for outdoor bins, because composting slows down significantly in cold temperatures. Composting worms do best above 55 degrees. If there are undigested food scraps, and you desperately need completed compost now, you can harvest whatever completed compost is in there. Harvest Completed Compost Most of the worms, undigested food scraps, sticks,

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How to Separate Worms from Compost and Bedding

red worms in compost

There are several reasons why you might want to separate your composting worms from their bedding. Perhaps it is time to harvest the finished compost. Or maybe something has gone REALLY wrong in the bin, and you need to start your bin over again. Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm offers several techniques for separating your worms from most of their bedding. If your worms have been munching on scraps for more than a few months, there should be plenty of “black gold” (worm castings) in the bin. Worm castings are an all-natural, nutrient-rich fertilizer for the garden and houseplants. They are also filled with friendly microbes that are good for the soil. Once in a while, a worm bin

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Lasagna Composting (a.k.a. Sheet Composting) is Super Easy!

Upon reading the title, you would probably start thinking about a compost pile that creates ready-made lasagna or produces lasagna ingredients. Well, you’re absolutely wrong with at least the former assumption. Lasagna composting or sheet composting is a horticultural method deriving its name from the process and style of layering your compost. It may sound appetizing but it’s basically a procedure that helps establish a new garden bed with the richest of soil, that’s where the assumption that it produces lasagna ingredients is partially true. Lasagna composting is an organic gardening method that helps save time.  Imagine all the benefits of composting with almost none of the work. Lasagna composting involves spreading all the materials directly on the garden in layers thin enough that they break down on their own with no watering or turning. How wonderful! Some things to consider before attempting this type of composting: This is an ideal early-fall technique, so you will have optimal soil by spring. Lasagna composting takes six months or more, so it’s not a good strategy if you want to plant soon. This style of composting isn’t exactly the most attractive way to compost. Most homesteaders won’t care, but if you’re homesteading on a suburban lot with a picky homeowner’s association, you may catch some grief. Creating a lasagna compost can certainly help save you some time versus traditional composting as it doesn’t require any digging, tilling or removing of sod. It may sound a bit sensational but it’s also quite effective. …

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