Compost is a natural fertilizer. Worms, grubs, bacteria and microorganisms work together to turn yard waste and food scraps into a nutrient-rich soil additive. Create a compost bed to make use of natural forces for a never-ending supply of "black gold."
Lay the landscaping fabric down where you want your compost bed. Line the edges of the fabric with the railroad ties, to create a square bed on the ground.
Fill the bed half an inch deep with shredded paper, newspaper or corrugated cardboard. Because this material isn't living, it's called a "brown layer."
Add a "green layer" of food scraps, lawn clippings, or other green waste. Only fruit and vegetable waste should be used; meat and dairy products, as well as greases and oils, don't compost well and can attract rats and create a foul odor.
Continue layering dead and live materials until you reach the top of your compost bed. The final layer should be organic soil, followed by a light spritzing of water.
Leave the compost alone for eight to twelve weeks, or cover with black plastic and leave for four to six weeks.
Scoop out the black soil after it's composted and sift through a wire mesh screen to preserve large things that still need more time to compost. Return any non-composted materials back into the bin and use the rest in your garden as topsoil or to supplement potting soil.