How to Make Humic Compost


Humic Compost is compost in its finished form, according to It differs from manure compost in that it no longer contains active microbes for breaking down organic matter. Although this form of compost looks like crumbly black dirt, it is essentially humus, a nutrient laden, fluffy form of organic soil. Humic compost is lower in nitrogen than manure compost. This form of compost makes an ideal potting soil, a good fertilizer applied as a mulch, or can be plowed into the garden to improve the qualities of the existing soil. Making humic compost is as easy as waiting for a cake to bake. But in this case, your compost is a cake that can take months to cook.

Step 1

Spread dead leaves, hay and pine needles over the ground.

Step 2

Mow over these items with a lawn mower to chop them.

Step 3

Layer these items to a depth of 12 to 24 inches deep at the bottom of your compost pile.

Step 4

Place vegetable scraps in a blender and chop into small pieces (about 1 inch in diameter).

Step 5

Layer vegetable scraps, grass clippings and peat moss to a depth of 2 to 4 inches.

Step 6

Continue to layer 'green' (nitrogen rich) and 'brown' (carbon rich) materials until the pile is the size that you want.

Step 7

Wet the pile with a garden hose until it is the consistency of a wrung-out sponge.

Step 8

Stir the pile every two weeks and check to see if it needs to be dampened again.

Step 9

Wait until all large scraps of organic matter have decomposed.

Step 10

Test compost by placing a sample of soil in a plastic freezer bag and let set for 2 weeks. If bag does not smell of ammonia, then the compost has become humus.

Things You'll Need

  • Hay
  • Dead leaves
  • Pine needles
  • Peat moss
  • Vegetable scraps
  • Blender
  • Grass clippings
  • Shovel
  • Garden hose
  • Lawn mower


  • Soil Biology
  • Humic Acid: By Popular Demand
  • Humic Compost / Humus / Organic Soil Treatment

Who Can Help

  • What is the real difference between Compost and Humus?
Keywords: compost, humus, mulch, humic compost

About this Author

After 10 years experience in writing, Tracy S. Morris has countless articles and two novels to her credit. Her work has appeared in national magazines and newspapers, including "Ferrets" and "CatFancy," as well as the "Lexington Herald Leader" and "The Tulsa World," and several websites.