How to Make Super Compost

Overview

Compost is our way of replicating the recycling of nature. It consists of organic materials such as leaves, grass clippings, twigs, bark and other natural plant materials that, upon decay, provide nutrients to growing plants, rendering a rich, loose soil that plants will thrive in. Super compost releases nutrients that have the same effect as fertilizer, except the nutrients are released at a much slower rate. This builds the internal cellular structure of the plant, making a healthier plant from the inside out.

Step 1

Determine a convenient space to place the compost bin. Consider a place close to the house or garage and with easy access to water.

Step 2

Begin making super compost by adding a 4-inch layer of coarse material in the bottom of the compost bin. This can be twigs, stems, small limbs and stemmed plants. Coarse materials allow the compost to breathe and will facilitate the decaying process.

Step 3

Apply a light misting with a water hose after each layer. It is important to keep the compost moist but not saturated.

Step 4

Add a 6-inch layer of leaves, grass clippings, hay or whatever you have available.

Step 5

Add another 4-inch layer of coarse materials. Repeat this layer after each additional layer.

Step 6

Introduce animal manure to the compost bin, gradually adding 4 inches at a time. Make sure a coarse layer of organic materials has been added before and after each layer of animal manure.

Step 7

Add water as often as necessary to keep the compost moist.

Step 8

Keep the lid on the compost bin to prevent saturation with rainwater.

Step 9

Recycle kitchen scraps such as fruit and vegetable peelings, coffee grounds and paper towels into the compost bin as they become available. Avoid using meat scraps and sugary and salty foods.

Step 10

Tumble the compost to thoroughly mix ingredients. While this is not necessary, it does promote faster decomposition. If using a fence-style compost bin, simply remove the fence that contains the compost, reposition it, and use a pitch fork to mix the compost and place back into the bin.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not use wood that has been treated or manure from animals such as cats, dogs or humans in making super compost. Do not use compost that contains animal manure before it has cured completely as it can contain E. coli bacteria.

Things You'll Need

  • Homemade or purchased compost bin
  • Leaves
  • Dead plant material (pine needles, hay, pine cones)
  • Food scraps from fruits and vegetables
  • Grass clippings (herbicide-free)
  • Animal manure (only use manure from poultry, rabbit, cattle or horses)
  • Torn or shredded paper or cardboard

References

  • Mother Earth News: Compost Made Easy
  • Washington State University Cooperative Extension: Backyard Composting
  • University of Massachutes: Composting Horse Manure

Who Can Help

  • Mother Earth News: Compost Troubleshooting
Keywords: making super compost, super compost, how make compost

About this Author

Patricia Hill is a freelance writer who contributes to several sites and organizations, including eHow, Associated Content, Break Studios and various private sectors. She also contributes to the online magazine, Orato.com.