8 Ways to Use Compost In Your Garden

It is no surprise to see that farmers are looking for the best way to make their farm and farm produce better. Although a lot of people are on the lookout for new things to better things, what if we told you all you need to get the best from your farm is right within your reach?

A lot of farmers are familiar with compost, many are familiar with the process of making compost, what many are not familiar with is what ways to make use of compost on their farm.

There are many effective ways by which compost can be used, all you need do is read through this article to find out!

Composting Explained

A little information on what compost is will help you understand how much power it has and what it can do. Compost can be referred to as the breakdown of organic matters.

In simple terms, compost is a mixture of various materials, such as leaves, tree barks, grass clippings, and food scraps, broken down by microorganisms to turn into the soil to benefit the soil.

The process of composting involves keeping these materials together for a long period various ways, while these materials are kept together, microorganisms break them down and they turn into black soil, often referred to as “black gold” which then becomes beneficial to your farm when applied.

How to Use Compost In Your Garden

Here are some creative ways to use compost in the garden.

1. Soil Conditioner

A soil conditioner is regarded as an amendment that improves the physical properties of the soil. Although there are various other “organic” and “inorganic “soil conditioners up for sale, compost is regarded as the best general-purpose soil conditioner.

This means compost can improve the texture of the soil on your farm and cause it to be more productive and develop resistance to diseases. Regardless of what problem your soil is facing, adding compost heals and improves the situation of your soil, unlike other soil conditioners sold which will require you to know the type of soil, problem, and structure of the soil before getting any conditioner.

Composting as a conditioner will allow your soil to retain moisture, as well as nutrients.

Types of composting methods
Image: Envato Elements

2. Maintain pH

Not only is your compostable to act as a conditioner for your soil, but it can also increase the pH of your soil. The pH of the soil is the level of acidity or alkalinity of the soil, basically meaning that it is how acidic the soil is.

The pH is quite important as it influences the availability of essential nutrients. When the pH of the soil is not at its right state, it can affect the productivity of the soil and produce. A tested and trusted way to stabilize the pH of the soil is to add compost; this is especially effective when your soil is sandy.

Composts prevent an imbalance in the soil i.e., potassium, calcium, etc, which then keeps the soil from becoming overly acidic.

3. Weed Prevention

Weed is a common thing that most gardeners have to deal with at one point or another.

While there are many inorganic ways to get rid of weed in your garden, wouldn’t it be nice to nourish your soil while you get rid of weeds? A good way to use compost to prevent weed is to apply compost all around your plant and garden as mulch.

For one, this helps keep the nutrients locked into the soil, for the plants. Spread about 2 inches of compost under the plant or edge of the bed. This will also help reduce moisture loss and stabilize soil temperature.

4. Soil Amendment

Soil amendment is important for any plant’s growth. One of the easiest and most common ways to amend the soil is by using compost.

Using compost as an amendment increases the aeration, beneficial microbes, water retention, nutrient content, etc. basically mixing compost with soil as an amendment provides the soil with nutrients that are required for it to grow as it should. Although compost can be a great addition to the soil, it can cause problems for the soil.  

5. Mulch

Mulch is as important in a garden as compost; however, one can be used as the other. Mulch is any material that is put on top of the soil, around the plants to help it keep the moisture locked in and keep weeds off. Mulch can be made out of wood, leaves, and just about anything.

Compost can serve in place of mulch since it comprises some of the materials that are used as/for mulch.

Using compost as mulch requires that you add a thick layer. That is, add a 3 to 4-inch layer of compost over the soil around your plant, during the growing season. This can be done every month, during this season.

6. Fertilizer

Epsom Salt As Fertilizer
Image: Envato Elements

Using compost as fertilizer is one effective way to use it for your farm. There are two methods by which you can make use of compost as a fertilizer.

First as a side dressing; using compost as a side dressing involves adding the compost in small quantities around the perimeter of the plant, two to three times during the growing season. Another method of using compost as fertilizer is to use it as compost tea.

This involves soaking compost in water for a few hours up to a day or two, then separating the compost from the tea (The compost can still be used for other purposes). The compost tea can be used to water plants in the garden; it can also be used as a foliar spray or as fertilizer for container plants.

The compost feeds the plant with nutrients via its roots and via its leaves.

7. Soil

A more effective way to make use of compost in your garden is to use it as soil for your plant. If you are preparing a new bed, we recommend that you make use of compost.

This is because compost costs less, which makes it cheaper than ready-made soil sold, and it also contains maximum nutrients that your plant can benefit from. This gives you the assurance that your plants are in good soil and have what they need to survive.

Compost is recommended for container gardening and this is because it absorbs and retains the right amount of water that the soil needs for the plant. It is also recommended for certain plants i.e., tomatoes, however for most plants, a mix is ideal.

8. Potting Mix

using potting mix at home
Image: @leencrombez via Twenty20

Knowing how to make your potting mix will help you to spend less, while you get the best. To make the best potting mix, you must add compost as this adds nutrients to your plant. The potting mix allows you to make the most suitable soil for your plant.

There are different potting soil/mixes and this is dependent on what you want to plant. While some potting mix will require that you make an additional purchase, some will not require much from you, all you will be required of can be found in your garden/farm.

An example of a potting mix is a potting mix for seedlings. You will need compost, coir, and perlite, these ingredients ensure that your seed grows well as it ought to.  

Final Thoughts 

It is pleasing that you can spend less and get so much. Such is the case of compost in the garden.

Compost is regarded as black gold and this is because of the nutrients and value that it has to offer. Compost not only provides value but is also economical.

Experts recommend that compost should be spread over the soil and this is because digging the soil will affect mycorrhizal fungi, which will allow plants to get nutrients from the earth.