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Soils, Compost, Fertilizer
Backyard Composting: Simple, small-scale methods (Publication #B-947R)
Composting is the process by which organic materials, such as yard and kitchen wastes, are decomposed into a dark-colored, nutrient-rich, soil-building conditioner called humus. By establishing a backyard compost pile, the biological process is accelerated by controlling temperature, oxygen, and moisture content. The resulting humus can be mixed into garden beds, added to flowerpots, and used as mulch for perennials and woody plants. Backyard Composting: Simple, small-scale methods discusses the advantages, nutrient requirements and sources, ideal locations, and potential problems of composting. This seven-page bulletin explains how composting reduces dependency on manufactured chemical fertilizers and improves soil structure.