Plants thrive on nutrients that are right there in your kitchen. You can convert the pile of garbage in your home into compost manure for your backyard garden.
Some gardeners call it ‘black gold’ According to Leonard Muzahura, a gardener with Superior Landscapes in Nsambya, a Kampala suburb, every backyard gardener can make compost without spending a penny.
It is simple to recycle, but highly rewarding. Compost does not only feed your plants to grow well, but also allows you to manage garbage at home. “It is the most reliable manure that has no chemicals in it.
It is a product of decomposed organic matter,” he explains. Muzahura adds that you can decompose it from a pit, a bucket or container. All you need is sort your garbage because not all will be needed.
The matter you need
Solomon Luyimbaazi, another gardener with CIDI Institute of Gardening and Landscaping in Muyenga says compost is achieved through a process.
- “Billions of bacteria, fungi digest kitchen waste and turn it into compost,” he explains.
- Collect the green and brown waste from different containers before adding a little animal waste. The microorganisms require the correct proportion of carbon and nitrogenfor them to do their work.
- Greens matter includes; fruit scraps, peels, vegetables and these are high in nitrogen.
- Browns that have lots of carbon include; egg shells, papers, saw dust, dry leaves among others.
- However, avoid cooked food as it gives off bad odour, meat, bones, pet waste and medicines.
- Also, do not use plastic bags, bottles, diseased plants, dog and cat waste. Use waste from barnyard animals that feed on grass like cows, goats and more.
How to convert garbage into compost
Luyimbazi says that if you choose to decompose compost from your garden, dig a pit and keep throwing in green and brown waste as you collect it from your kitchen until the pit fills up. In the same way, if it is a container, drill holes underneath for easy drainage and aeration.
After, keep a tray down to collect the water from the matter. This water can be diluted and added to the plants for nutrients. Meanwhile, before adding the kitchen waste to the container first put a layer of soil to fasten the decomposing process. Remember to keep both the pit and container covered to deter insects and rain water.
“Add a little cow dung to start off the decomposing process,” he advises. Luyimbaazi adds that keep covering the waste with sawdust, dry leaves, or newspapers whenever you add to keep off insects like houseflies. “Sprinkle some water and mix the matter twice every week until it decomposes,” he advises.
However, the waste should be damp, so, regulate watering. If it gets too wet it will produce maggots and smell. If it’s too dry, add some water and dry leaves. When the matter becomes dark brown in about two to four months, then it is ready. Add compost to your vegetable plants, herbs, spices and fruit trees. Besides, always have enough compost for your garden throughout the year because it is equally nutritional food for your potted plants.