Growing up, one of my chores was to take our compost bin from under the sink to the back of our property and throw it in a pile next to my mom’s veggie garden. To me, composting seemed stupid… why not just throw it all in the trash? Didn’t it end up all the same anyway?
Turns out it is NOT the same. When produce scraps and egg shells are given back to the soil directly, the soil becomes richer and more potent with nutrients. If you have a garden, or plan to flesh one out, compost is a great addition to your soil before planting and after the harvest season to keep soil from becoming acidic and depleted.
What should go into your pile?
Compost requires a balance of “browns” and “greens”. “Browns” are materials like sticks, leaves, wood chips or other dry, airy material. “Greens” are the more wet components, and these come from your kitchen scraps. Make sure there are equal parts of browns and greens, and that the pile gets some water to help with breaking down into rich dirt. Also, avoid meat, dairy and bread in your pile, as these will rot and attract pests.
Eggshells have always seemed magickal to me. How amazing that a creature can grow outside of its mother, in a small replication of a womb. Each time I add eggshells to my pile, I imagine the life energy entering back into the dirt, spreading and boosting everything it touches.
Produce scraps are a great example of “greens”, which should comprise half your compost pile anyway. Another one would be lawn clippings and green waste. It will keep it out of the landfill AND help build your compost pile.
If you have lots of leaves from seasons changing, those are excellent “browns”, along with chopped up trees from Christmas, sticks, dried out branches and straw or wood chips from animal enclosures.
Coffee grounds provide plenty of nitrogen, and are considered a “greens” addition. They always feel like a powerful ally to the compost system, so I imagine energy of strength entering the dirt when I add them.
I always feel more connected to the spirits in my yard and garden when composting. I see the lizards and worms crawling among the bounty of my produce scraps as my plants wave happily in the wind, knowing nutrients are being returned to their soil. The act of composting is to be part of the life cycle. It is a sacred offering to our Mother Earth that whispers our thanks for her energy sources. Nothing blesses your crops quite like receiving nature’s acknowledgement. Scientifically, matter can neither be created nor destroyed, so to give these unused parts makes a world of difference to your yard and our whole planet.
Do you compost? If you do not have a yard, are there special ways you compost or reduce waste?
Author: Ariella Upton of Silfren Circle