Using compost as mulch, in the soil or as potting media is beneficial
in many ways.
Compost contains a full spectrum of essential plant nutrients. You
can test the nutrient levels in your compost and soil to find out
what other supplements it may need for specific plants.
contains macro and micronutrients often absent in synthetic fertilizers.
releases nutrients slowly—over months or years,
unlike synthetic fertilizers
enriched soil retains fertilizers better. Less fertilizer runs
off to pollute waterways.
buffers the soil, neutralizing both acid & alkaline soils,
bringing pH levels to the optimum range for nutrient availability
bind clusters of soil particles, called aggregates, which provide
good soil structure. Such soil is full of tiny air
channels & pores that hold air, moisture and nutrients.
helps sandy soil retain water and nutrients.
loosens tightly bound particles in clay or silt soil so roots
can spread, water drain & air penetrate.
alters soil structure, making it less likely to erode, and prevents
soil spattering on plants—spreading disease.
can hold nutrients tight enough to prevent them from washing
but loosely enough so plants can take them up as needed.
makes any soil easier to work.
brings and feeds diverse life in the soil. These bacteria, fungi,
insects, worms and more support healthy plant growth.
bacteria break down organics into plant available nutrients.
Some bacteria convert nitrogen from the air into a plant
enriched soil have lots of beneficial insects, worms and
other organisms that burrow through soil keeping it
may suppress diseases and harmful pests that could overrun poor,
soil is an important factor in protecting our waters. Compost
soil’s ability to retain water & decreases runoff.
Runoff pollutes water by carrying soil, fertilizers and pesticides
to nearby streams.
encourages healthy root systems, which decrease runoff
can reduce or eliminate use of synthetic fertilizers
can reduce chemical pesticides since it contains beneficial
microorganisms that may protect plants from diseases
a 5% increase in organic material quadruples soils water holding
When that first batch of finished compost is ready to spread, congratulate
yourself for your efforts because you are ecological minded, and know
that organic materials should be recycled into the soil instead of
being put in a garbage can. By recycling the organic materials, valuable
nutrients and organic matter are recycled. You have helped alleviate
the solid waste problem!