Composting: It about more than just your banana peels

Ok, y’all.  Confession time (don’t you just love when I make my confessions?).  I haven’t been composting as I should lately.  There.  I said it.  I’m a homesteader who has been throwing out perfectly good, compostable goods.

It all started when we broke our usual kitchen compost bucket.  You know the one.  We all have one in our kitchen.  The pot, bowl, crock that holds the yucky stuff until we can make our way out to the compost pile.  Well, my husband dropped ours and we were without it for a while.  Obviously, I could have just used something else, but something in my head just shut off when we broke that compost bucket and I started getting lazy.

I made a trip to our local Goodwill and found a perfectly acceptable replacement and that was the first step to setting things right.  Now I just need to reset my brain and all that good, yucky, kitchen stuff will start making its way back into the compost pile.

Luckily I recently had the pleasure and honor of reading Dawn Gifford’s new book Sustainability Starts at Home.  (You are probably already familiar with Dawn’s work.  She is the creator and author of the popular blog Small Footprint Family.)  In it she includes an amazing chapter titled “100 Things You Can (and Should) Compost.”  To quote Dawn’s view on composting,

It is completely unsustainable for us to squander this essential resource and further deplete our precious topsoil by throwing our food and yard waste into landfills.

Wow.  Ok.  Ok.  Ok.  I’m back on the composting train.  And after reading this chapter, I’m going to be including even more “yucky” stuff in my compost bucket, like dog hair and the contents of my vacuum bags.  You learn something new every day!

And in case you were wondering, Dawn’s book reaches far and beyond composting.  Chapter titles include:

  • Reduce, Reuse and Only Then Recycle
  • Slay the Energy Vampires in Your Home
  • Recipes for Green Cleaning
  • Why You Should Join a CSA
  • Celebrate an Eco-Friendly Holiday
  • and so, so much more.

In writing this book, Dawn’s goal is to help us better use the finite resources of this earth and be better stewards of our planet.  Sustainable simply means “the capacity to endure indefinitely.”  As homesteaders, most of us are hoping to do just that.  Further, by implementing just some of the tips and tricks that she outlines in this book, you have the potential to save a lot of money on energy, food and water bills.

Not convinced yet?

Here is a selection of other books that explain the benefits of composting.

Product
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Where to Buy
The Rodale Book of Composting, Newly Revised and Updated
Let It Rot!: The Gardener's Guide to Composting (Third Edition) (Storey's Down-To-Earth Guides)
Composting Basics: All the Skills and Tools You Need to Get Started (How to Basics) Second Edition
Organic Book of Compost, 2nd Revised Edition: Easy and Natural Techniques to Feed Your Garden (IMM Lifestyle Books) Handbook to Sustainable, Low-Cost Methods, Community Composting, & More, with FAQs

 

1. The Rodale Book of Composting, Newly Revised and Updated: Simple Methods to Improve Your Soil, Recycle Waste, Grow Healthier Plants, and Create an Earth-Friendly Garden (Rodale Classics)

Rodale Classics updated this book in 2018. It now has 304 pages and offers easy-to-follow instructions for making and using compost. There are also tips to help those living in apartments, people who live in the suburbs, and even community leaders develop sound solutions for growing waste-disposal problems.

2. Let It Rot!: The Gardener’s Guide to Composting (Third Edition) (Storey’s Down to Earth Guides)

Written by Stu Campbell, this book is 153 pages of instructions and easy-to-use guides showing you how to turn household garbage and plant material from around the yard into nutrient-filled compost. Not only can it nourish your soil, it will promote a living garden.

3. Composting Basics: All the Skills and Tools You Need to Get Started (How to Basics) Second Edition

In this 160 page book by Eric Ebeling, you will learn how to recycle household waste to make quality compost to nourish your garden. Whether you live in the country, suburbs, or city, you can recycle household waste whether you garden or not.

4. Organic Book of Compost, 2nd Revised Edition: Easy and Natural Techniques to Feed Your Garden (IMM Lifestyle Books) Handbook to Sustainable, Low-Cost Methods, Community Composting, & More, with FAQs

This complete guide, by Pauline Pears, will help you learn the sustainable, low-cost way to produce fertile soil for your garden. It explains what you need to know about compost, and what you can and cannot compost in this 192 page book.