I decided to start a compost pile. That is your fair warning that this will simultaneously be a post about bins and bin liners and composting, and ultimately how they all tie together. Now, I started composting because I want to start a garden, and I have heard that compost is the way to really make the plants thrive and get the most, and best, produce.
Naturally, I had to do a little research on how it all works. Like every good Westernized individual, I spent a decent amount of time on the internet: Wikipedia, Pinterest, Yahoo Answers… You know the drill. When I felt that I had amassed enough knowledge, I began with the first step. Now, you may think that the first step has to do with actually beginning to acquire compost, but that is not the case. It actually has to do with the proper container, known as a compost bin.
My neighbor growing up used to throw all of her compost in a spot in her backyard, and a lot of people still do that. Or you can go the route of the bin. My in-laws use a fifty-gallon rainwater barrel, turned on it’s side, suspended between two posts so that you can spin it around. Apparently spinning it around (i.e. keeping the compost moving, which is more or less just introducing air) is what you want to do. At this point I should probably mention that the three things you need to make compost are biodegradable trash, air, and moisture.
Also the temperature has to be pretty high, which is why a bin is the better option when dealing with food waste. Here is where it gets really interesting, because apparently there is some serious chemistry involved in all of this. It depends on the types of plants you are growing: certain plants respond better to certain amounts of nitrogen and stuff like that, so you can separate your waste in groups based on this.
I got a couple of different bins, and decided to use the compostable bin liners with them so that the bins weren’t getting gross all the time and producing some nasty smells and juices. I put coffee grounds in one of them exclusively for higher nitrogen. I put meat in a separate one because it takes meat longer to break down, and it also requires a higher temperature.
Then I just scrape all of our other food waste into each one so that they can continue to produce evenly. Before too long: voila! The richest, healthiest, blackest homemade dirt you could ever imagine.