In the last post, I wrote about the compost “ingredients”.
The next step will be to identify the right space to compost. If you live in an individual house, you can quiet easily find a corner that you can use. If you live in an apartment like me, you have to find a suitable space where you can place the compost pots, that will not be an eye soar to anyone, as well as some place where the “composting smell” does not reach the residents. You should not leave it in a space where there will be 8 hours of sunlight.
Place it in the terrace, or the balcony in a corner, so that there is little / no sunlight on the pots. Same applies for the rains as well. On a rainy day, ensure that the compost pots are covered with a lid / cover.
I place mine under the concrete table in my terrace, so that rains do not affect the pots.
Before going into details of actual composting, you must understand that there are two types of composts – wet wastes and dry wastes. Wet waste is essentially the scrap we get out of veges and fruits and those weeds we pull out of the soil. Dry waste is everything else like newspaper, dry leaves, wood scrap, etc.
The next step would be actual process of composting. While composting, you need to ready the pot, by leaving a drain hole under the pot / sides. Cover the hole with a rock / flat stone / some pebbles (just like how we ready the pot for planting)
Fill the first layer with soil, not too much – just enough so that it forms a proper flat layer. Fill in the wet waste in the pot, and then add more soil to cover the waste. If you do not have enough soil, you can add dry wastes into it. Now, close this pot with a lid or a sheet, just to ensure that no rodents / birds have access to the waste.
Follow the above step everyday to fill up the pot. When the pot is completely full, close this pot and leave it undisturbed. You can add water now and then, when you feel that your waste is too dry. If the waste feels too soggy (esp. when you add a lot of orange peels, etc.), add some dry wastes like shredded newspaper or dry leaves / plants.
Leave it undisturbed for 3-4 months and your compost aka black gold is ready!
Here is my compost, one in progress and the other one complete to be used for plants.
The water that drains out of the pot can be used on the plants, as this is liquid gold. The amount of energy that plants derive out of that water is enormous. Do not let it go waste.
To make use of the water, place the pot above a brick or another vessel that is smaller than the pot, so it can be placed to collect the water.
If by any chance, you are totally unable to compost, you can also grind the waste that you collect everyday and use them for plants (Just add this under a layer of soil)
Note: Ideally your ‘in progress’ compost should not smell bad at all. If in case your compost smells, add up more dry wastes. If you do not have enough dry wastes, you can leave the compost bin in the sun, so the compost can be dry and it should help.