Composting can often feel daunting and overwhelming to a compost-newbie. Perhaps, you’re worried about the smell or pests, or you don’t know how to get started. We’re here to reassure you that composting at home is more easy and fuss-free than you think! Here are 6 reasons why composting is great for you and the environment, even if you’re living in a small space.
- Reduce food waste and methane production
Food waste is inevitable. That head of lettuce that went bad because you forgot it was sitting at the back of your fridge – it happens to the best of us (and to me, often). While we can’t turn back time and eat those veggies before they turn limp and lifeless, we can ensure that they break down without further harming the environment.
Did you know that throwing food waste to landfill is more detrimental than composting your scraps? Food waste in landfill leads to anaerobic decomposition which releases methane, a greenhouse gas which contributes to global warming. Composting uses a form of aerobic decomposition which doesn’t produce large amounts of greenhouse gasses to affect the environment.
- Cheap and easy to get started
Composting is super easy to get started! Depending on the method you choose, you may need to lay down some upfront investments such as a worm farm, bokashi bucket or a tub to compost in. Aside from your food waste and a bit of time, you’re ready to go!
- Free fertilizer
The fruits of your (low effort) labor will yield you with nutritious fertilizer for your plants – all for free! Your finished compost can be used in a variety of ways including mulch, potting soil, to top dress garden beds and even as a gift to your green-thumb friends!
- Low effort and virtually stink-free
Composting is pretty much set, (an occasional stir) and forget! Chuck in your food scraps and let nature do it’s work, and in a few months, you’ll reap the rewards of finished compost. Your compost should be stink-free, it shouldn’t smell like a pungent garbage bin – if it is, then you’re probably doing something wrong! Strong, rancid smells coming from your compost bin is a sign of anaerobic decomposition which is not what we want. This means that your decomposing fruits and veg don’t have enough air to break down, as anaerobic means ‘without air’ (thank you year 9 PE class!).
The goal with composting is aerobic decomposition, meaning your compost bin, bucket or farm shouldn’t have a strong rotting smell. If your compost is balanced and happy, it should smell earthy, but only if you’ve put your nose right up in it. You shouldn’t be able to smell your compost bin from afar!
Composting in an apartment has never been easier with the tools available! Your balcony doesn’t have to house a massive mound of rotting fruits and vegetables to call it a compost. There are many ways you can compost in small spaces, with discreet worm farms and buckets that blend right into your balcony. Or you could even house a bokashi bucket right in your kitchen, all tucked away under the sink or right on the bench if that fits your style!
- Lowers your carbon footprint
Composting is an easy, low effort way to lower your carbon footprint. You can compost pretty much all organic matter from the cardboard packaging from your Amazon order, to your dog’s pet hair, and of course your food scraps. While you can compost pretty much anything that’s organic, you’ll need to check which type of composting method you’re working with. For example, worms hate bay leaves, chili, and citrus while you can chuck it all into your heart’s content in a bokashi bucket.