How to make organic compost yourself?

Organic compost

Every year we produce tons of waste that ends up on landfills. Of course, a part of that waste is recycled waste. Consider glass, paper, plastic or metal. But garden waste is also reused through composting. Organic compost is a way in which solid waste is broken down by microorganisms. In combination with oxygen, this triggers a natural reaction that recycles the organic waste.

For a household, organic compost is an important part of reducing the amount of household waste. Every household can compost and it doesn’t cost a lot of money or effort. The end product can be used as a natural fertilizer for gardening and for agricultural purposes.

If you are curious how you can make an organic compost heap in your own garden, then certainly continue reading.

Compost garden

What is organic compost?

When composting, you create ideal conditions for triggering natural decay or putrefaction of natural products. If you want to start composting, you need a number of basic components: organic waste such as fruit and vegetables, wood waste, leaves, newspapers and grass. You also need water, air and soil that is the source for microorganisms.

During the process of composting, the microorganisms living in the soil do all the work. They eat the organic waste and break it down into very small particles. The result is humus that is rich in fiber. In addition, the humus contains inorganic nutrients such as potassium, phosphorus and nitrogen.

The microorganisms break down the waste through aerobic breathing. For this they need the oxygen that they obtain from the air. It is important to regularly turn the waste in the compost bin. In addition, the microorganisms need water to stay alive and to multiply. The aerobic breathing process produces carbon dioxide and heat. Do you know that the temperature in a compost heap can be as high as 60 degrees Celsius? Provided the compost heap will be managed actively. You can stimulate this by regularly turning the waste and watering it. In this way the putrefaction process can take place in just a few weeks.

The ideal conditions for a compost heap

The balance in the compost heap is important. Otherwise, efficient dissolution cannot take place. Important components for the compost heap:

  • Enough water, the mixture must be moist, not soaked.
  • The mixture must be turned every other day so that it contains sufficient air.
  • The mixture must consist of small waste particles. Large chunks must be made small. Large parts also will be broken down, but it takes longer.
  • The correct ratio of nitrogen and carbon is important. The ideal ratio is 1:30.
  • A sufficient amount of soil that ensures the presence of the microorganisms.
Organic garden

Why do you want an organic compost heap?

The first and most important purpose of composting is to reduce the amount of waste. This saves waste on landfills. And when everyone offers less waste, the waste processing costs can also be reduced.

But in addition to saving waste, it is also a natural fertilizer. Compost contains many bacteria and fungi that break down the organic matter in the waste. Furthermore, in a good compost heap you will also find small worms, single-celled organisms and mites. They feed on the fungi and bacteria that are present. The centipedes, beetles and other invertebrates mainly feed on the single-celled organisms. This keeps the population of every organism in balance. A balance that increases the efficiency of composting. For example, it is clear that an environmentally friendly fertilizer is always better for your garden than synthetic fertilizer.

An organic compost therefor fits in a sustainable household, but is also an essential part of living off the grid.

How to make organic compost?

•      First choose a good place for your compost heap or compost bin. A compost heap or compost bin is ideally located at a good distance from the house. After all, you want to prevent dirty rotting odors from entering your home. You also have to think about a good distance for the neighbors property.

•      Add the ingredients. That sounds simple, but keep in mind that not all waste produces the same result. For example, waste from meat and dairy will contain many fats. This causes an unpleasant odor. But do you have an active organic compost heap, meat and dairy are not a problem. Furthermore, fruit and vegetable peels, seeds and leaves are ideal. Just like eggshells, coffee grounds including the paper filter, tea bags and used paper napkins. And of course garden waste, such as grass residues, twigs, hay, straw, sawdust and newspapers are good breeding grounds for the compost heap.

  • What you should not throw on the compost heap, includes human waste or cat litter. This contains diseases and parasites that disturb the natural balance. Diseased garden plants and invasive weeds are also not good for healthy organic compost.
  • Cover the compost pile with sufficient soil. It is recommended to spray the soil shortly with water, so that there is sufficient water available. Then turn the compost so that everything can mix well and there is sufficient air in it.
Organic vegetable garden

Worm composting for a faster process

Worms can shorten composting times by as much as 50 percent. You can sow your compost heap with earthworms or buy special compost worms. You can place a box with worms outside the house to process kitchen waste and meat scraps.

As you add new layers and run the compost, mix new layers of intact waste with partially broken layers. The partially and almost finished material will settle on the bottom because the particles are smaller. The completed compost comes from the bottom of the bin.

Making a compost heap is not difficult and is very good for the environment. You contribute to reducing waste processing, which can also have economic benefits. But if you really want to participate in sustainability, then composting is a great start. The compost, the end product, is purely organic. Plants in your garden will grow better. And have you started growing your own vegetables? Then the use of pure organic fertilizer is more than welcome. That way you know for sure that no chemical products has been used. That is how you start an easy and cheap sustainable life.

Living off the grid: 3 important steps to take

Living off the grid

Living off the grid is the dream of many, but only few realize this dream. No more envelopes, bills, WhatsApp groups and manage your energy consumption and waste. No more horrible job, but working to have a simple but comfortable and happy life.

Can you go without the luxuries you currently enjoy? Living off the grid goes hand-in-hand with arranging your own energy supply, food and waste. It’s a great way to reduce your ecological footprint. But are you up for it?

Off the grid living

What is living off the grid?

Almost every house is connected to the electricity network, has a gas connection and water supply. If you go off the grid, you will no longer use these ‘standard’ facilities. You are going to create your own energy. When the idea sounds attractive to you, it makes sense to become partially self-sufficient. Do you have the ambition and the possibilities to switch to a life off the grid? You’re a lucky one.

Do you want to know what it takes to live off the grid? Then continue reading, because we tell you everything you need to know about this lifestyle change. Living off the grid, 3 import steps to take.

How does it work, living off the grid?

An off grid way of life is more than anything being independent from big companies. Start with an alternative to your energy supply. Wind or solar energy are the most common possibilities, because these are energy sources that are always present. But you also need an alternative for clean drinking water supply. These are the steps you need to take.

solar panels

Step 1: Choose a natural energy source

You can produce solar energy by installing solar panels on the roof of your house. Or if you have enough land, the panels can also be placed on the ground. These are panels that contain cells made of silicon semiconductors. These semiconductors collect energy from the sun as soon as sunlight hits the panel. Electrons are released that cause an electric field. The electrons start flowing in one direction, creating direct energy. The inverter conducts the direct energy flow and converts it into the alternating energy that the house is using.

If you prefer to use wind energy, this works almost the same way. A wind turbine is installed that looks like an airplane propeller. This propeller stands on top of a tower of 15 to 36 meters high. As soon as the wind blows, the wings of the propeller start turning. They rotate around the axis of the rotor hub that leads to the generator. The generated energy by the rotations of the propeller blades are converted into electricity in the generator. An inverter ensures that the energy is converted into usable alternating energy.

Step 2 Choose an alternative for drinking water and the waste water

You have taken the first step by choosing a natural energy source. Now you should focus on ways to receive clean drinking water and alternatives to the sewer system.

Fortunately, there is water almost everywhere. It falls from the sky like rain, just as it runs under your feet as groundwater, or through rivers. You can get drinking water by digging a well. Of course there are laws and regulations regarding the drilling or digging of a private well. This differs per country. Contamination could occur in the soil due to leaks. It is also good to know that the deeper you drill the well, the cleaner the water will be. But it is always advisable to install a good water filter. This stops dirt and improves the taste of the water. An advantage of a private water source is that you can avoid a shortage of water during times of drought.

An above or belowground rain tank is another way to provide yourself with water. By using a pump, the water can be pumped under pressure towards the house. If you want to use rainwater as drinking water, make sure that the basin is made of metal or clay. A pre-filtering system is recommended, especially in areas where rainwater can be polluted by pollution and gases.

Then there is the sewer pipe that requires an alternative. Installing a septic system in the ground is the solution. A septic system is a large metal tank that collects and releases all waste from every drain in the house. The amount of bacteria in the tank ensures a natural degradation and separation of the liquids. This creates a lower sludge layer, a middle liquid layer and an upper foam layer in the tank. Every time wastewater flows in, the present middle layer of liquid flows out. This is done via perforated pipes that release the water from a distance into a specially created drain field. The bottom acts as a biological filter. How often the tank must be emptied depends on the size of the tank and the size of the household.

You waste water from the toilet could also be used as compost for your lands.

Living off the grid

Step 3 Say goodbye to the gas pipeline

Heating water and heating your house without gas is a new goal. Gas is polluting, and never environmental friendly. Additionally it is a non-renewable resource. You can think of an electric boiler. But it immediately uses a lot of the generated energy. Propane is an alternative gas source, but the propane tank must be filled regularly. A solar water heater seems more suitable. It is a system that uses the solar heat and thus heats the water. The wood-burning stoves are of course ideal for heating the house.

Do you feel you are ready to live off the grid? Being independent offers many benefits. But be aware that even with solar and wind energy, power consumption must be limited. You cannot use all your devices at the same time, as you were used to. You should more than ever strive for a sustainable lifestyle. But by composting and providing your own fruits and vegetables, life becomes a lot less complicated. Have your own chickens and take some goats for healthy milk. Off the grid is suitable for anyone who wants to live a greener life.