Use Compost to Make Golden Soil for Plants

What You'll Need
Composting bin
Yard waste
Kitchen waste
Wood shavings
Coffee grounds

Compost is commonly known as the black gold that can greatly enrich and nourish soil. This dark, crumbly, pleasant-smelling material can improve the overall condition of soil, and also increase its ability to absorb nutrients. You can make your own golden soil by putting together a compost pile and making compost in your backyard.

Step 1 – Make the Compost

Making compost is a relatively uncomplicated process, so long as you provide a warm, moist environment for the growth of microorganisms. Though you can build your compost pile in an open area, it is advisable to use an enclosed compost bin, so that you do not risk spreading odors or worms from the pile. To begin making compost, mix together ingredients such as organic kitchen waste, coffee grounds, wood shavings, sawdust, etc. Avoid items such as plastic, animal waste other than manure, and diseased plants in the mixture.

Lay down a layer of this mixture in your composting bin, till it is close to half a foot high. Cover with an equal amount of soil or manure, and sprinkle some water on top. Repeat the layering and watering till the pile is about 4 feet in height. Make sure the pile is always moist, but never wet. Turn it once in a while to improve circulation. Your compost is ready when it has a dark, crumbly texture, and a pleasant, earthy scent. This usually takes between 6 to 8 months, and the end product will be a quarter of the volume of the original pile.

Step 2 – Use Compost in the Soil

You can mix the compost with the soil in the spring or fall. Dig the soil to about 6 inches, and then add the compost in 3 inch layer. Mix thoroughly. Any plants that grow in this soil will thrive.

Step 3 – Use Compost as Mulch

Compost makes excellent mulch for the area around plants. It improves nutrition, texture, and reduces weeds. Apply a 3 inch layer of compost around plants. Avoid the roots, leaving some space between the plant and the area of application.

Step 4 – Make Compost Tea

Compost tea is a great way of increasing the nutrition supply to the soil. You can also use it as a spray. To make compost tea, add a gallon of mature compost to 5 gallons of chlorine-free water. Use an aquarium pump to bubble the water, and you will have your compost tea in 3 to 4 days.

Step 5 – Use Compost as Top Dressing

Use the fine particles in the compost to apply a thin layer on top of grass. The layer must be about a quarter inch thick. When used this way, it makes grass healthy, and improves the moisture retention in the soil. You will find that you do not need to use fertilizers after continually treating your lawn with compost.