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A starter’s guide to composting

Composting is an integral part of a zero waste lifestyle and it is something that you shouldn’t be afraid of. Fortunately for us living in Barcelona there is a collection of “organic trash” that is composted by the government. It’s already built into the recycling model.

But if you live in other countries it’s highly likely that you will have to take some proactive steps to do the composting yourself.

So, what is composting?

Compost is decayed organic material that is used to fertilize plants. We all produce organic matter when we cook with natural material in our homes. So why not put this material back into the cycle instead of sending it needlessly to a landfill.

Afterall, when that trash is in your bin, it’s already starting to decay before you have a change to take it out. Composting is completing this process at home.

All you need to start is a compost bin and red wiggler worms. There are some nice and beautiful option on the market. Check out these compost bins from Cost Plus World Market.

From left to right: 1) Steel & Silicone Kitchen Compost Bin 2) Natural Bamboo Fiber Compost Bucket 3) Copper Compost Bin 4) Steel Compost Bucket

Why should you compost?

One study found that household who composted saved more than 277 pounds of trash from entering landfill over a year. That’s quite an amazing figure.

So let’s prevent that production on methane gases produced by compacted waste in landfills. It’s simple to do at home with just a few steps.

How to prepare your organic trash?

Remember to only put materials that can be composted into your organic trash bin or compost bucket.

Be sure to use a biodegradable bag to ensure that no plastic obstructs the process if you have an organic trash bin.

DO NOT include any of the following:

  • Animal waste
  • Tea bags and coffee liners (unless biodegradable)
  • Hair
  • Diapers
  • Coated paper

DO include:

  • leftovers of meat & fish
  • Bread
  • Fruit
  • Vegetables
  • Seafood
  • Nuts
  • Eggshells
  • Cork stoppers
  • Coffee grounds
  • Kitchen towels and oil-stained napkins
  • Gardening remains

Check your local trash agency for any other restrictions.

How to compost at home?

If you’re living in a small apartment it’s unlikely that you will have the necessary outdoor space to compost outdoors. But it’s fairly easy to compost indoors.

So it’s time to get your compost bin and red wiggler worms. As you can image the worms break down the organic matter into compost that you can then use for your plants or even donate to someone with a garden. Et voila!

Does your country offer options for composting? Do you have your own compost bin? Let me know your tips and tricks in the comments.


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8 thoughts on “A starter’s guide to composting

  1. Thank you for sharing – this is a great idea. A lot of people seem to use tissues and then put them in the rubbish bin. I was wondering if you put yours in the compost? Many thanks.

    • Aayesha Natasha

      Hi there, Thanks for the questions! I put them in the compost. They are natural materials and should be placed there are long as they don’t have unnatural materials like clearning products or animal waste that might affect the composting process.

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