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Composting Basics

April 3, 2013

Mike Boersma. County Extension Educator with the U of M Extension Service in Murray and Pipestone Counties
Spring is a great time to consider composting. An active compost pile is relatively easy to manage on a small scale and can be a great way to utilize household food waste, lawn clippings and leaves to create a product that is an excellent soil amendment for the home garden. While it is not considered a fertilizer, the finished compost material contains very valuable micro-nutrients and improves soil structure and water holding capacity.

The concept of composting is relatively simple and consists of mixing brown material (a source of carbon) with green material (a source of nitrogen) and supplying water and air to the mixture. Carbon sources include items like fallen leaves, woodchips, or straw while common nitrogen sources may include household food scraps or animal manure.

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