How to make compost?

Comment faire du compost ?

Good soil, which forms the basis of a healthy garden, is rarely found naturally and must be created. One of the best ways to improve the fertility and consistency of existing soil is to make your own compost.

Almost all native soils are deficient in nutrients and structure (physical condition), with most being too clayey, rocky, lean or sandy, resulting in a less than ideal environment for plant growth.

Improving the soil with compost and other nutrient-rich substances such as livestock manure or earthworms will improve the soil's structure, texture, aeration and ability to retain soil. water.

It also helps with erosion control, pH balance and healthy root development.


In its raw form,compostis composed of brown carbon-based material such as dead leaves and small branches, and green nitrogen-based material such as grass clippings, sizes of fresh plants and herbal kitchen scraps.
composting is the process of transforming this raw material by decomposition with the help of beneficial insects, earthworms and microorganisms (bacteria and fungi) into a soil-like material, rich in nutrients, which is added to the existing soil.


Composting can be as simple as letting a pile of plant debris decompose on its own, which is called passive or cold composting. However, this can take up to a year or more, with inconsistent results.

Active or hotcompostingspeeds decomposition by introducing oxygen (turning the pile), adding moisture, and providing the correct carbon-to-nitrogen ratio. This allows the microorganisms to do their job more efficiently and increases the core temperature to 49-71 degrees Celsius, speeding up the process by "cooking" the pile. By employing these tactics, composting can be accomplished in as little as 1 to 3 months.


  • Break down: Cut or shred plant material into small pieces to increase the surface area, which allows microorganisms to digest it more quickly.
  • Layer: Lay several inches of twigs or straw first to ensure drainage and aeration at the bottom. Alternate layers of brown (carbon) and green (nitrogen) materials on top of each other—much like a dish of lasagna—so that the materials are evenly distributed and easily accessible to microorganisms.
    Finish with a top layer of brown material to help reduce unwanted odors.
    Fill a small compost bin as much as possible, or create a pile three feet deep.
  • Add an activator: Activators, although not necessary, can be added to start decomposition.
    Natural activators include chicken manure, comfrey leaves, grass clippings, and fresh (seedless) weeds. Other activators or starters are commercially manufactured and available online.
  • Add moisture: Water the pile just enough to moisten it, then repeat occasionally if you don't get regular rain. Too much water can make the pile soggy and cool the core temperature, slowing decomposition.
    Not enough water can slow or completely stop decomposition. The consistency should be similar to a damp sponge that has been wrung out. To check the moisture content, take a handful of compost and squeeze it. If water comes out, the pile is too wet. If there are no droplets, the pile is too dry.
    A few droplets when squeezed indicate that the moisture content is just right.
  • Cover: Lay tarps, plastic sheets, or wood over an open pile to retain heat and moisture.
  • Aerate: Turn the compost every 1 to 3 weeks with a fork or turn if you have a drum.
    This is also a good time to add more water if necessary to ensure all parts of the pile stay moist.
  • Neutralize odors: Add lime or calcium if necessary to repel flies and neutralize odors. If the compost develops an ammonia smell, add more carbon-rich materials such as dry leaves or straw.
  • Monitor the temperature: The internal temperature of the pile can be monitored with a compost thermometer.


    With kitchen and food waste accounting for up to a third of all household waste, composting is a great way to reduce your waste, as well as your carbon footprint.
    When organic matter ends up in landfills, it lacks the conditions necessary for optimal decomposition, creating harmful methane gas in the process that contributes to global warming and climate change.
    Kitchen counter compost bins make it easy to store your waste before adding it to your compost bin or pile.


    • Waste from carnivorous animals, including dogs and cats, can contain dangerous parasites and bacteria that are difficult to remove with traditional composting methods.
    • Meat, bones and fish waste decompose slowly. They can also attract pests and cause unpleasant odors.
    • Oil, grease or cooking grease breaks down slowly and attracts pests, as well as causes odors.
    • Large pieces of wood decompose too slowly.
    • Pressure-treated wood or railroad ties contain harmful chemicals.
    • Plant material such as grass clippings that have been treated with chemical pesticides or fertilizers should be omitted. It's important to produce clean organic compost, especially if you're growing food, so you don't expose yourself to chemicals that can be dangerous to your health.
    • Keep out seeds of invasive plants such as plantweed and butterfly bush, as well as weed seeds, which can germinate if the compost does not reach a high enough temperature for a sufficient amount of time. It takes 30 days at 60 degrees Celsius to kill most weed seeds.
    • Do not introduce diseased plant debris, as pathogens can remain alive in the finished compost and spread to healthy plants in the garden.

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