It is officially springtime, and that means it is time to begin gardening. How exciting! We are here to lend a helping hand with your gardens and nurseries by showing you the do’s and don’ts of composting. Which items make for good compost? Which items should be avoided? Keep reading for our list of items that will do your garden, nursery and back yard good.

compost Rather than using traditional fertilizers, which can contain harmful chemicals that are horrible for gardening, can kill plants and are just plain bad for the planet, try compost. The great part of composting is it consists of recycled materials that will nourish your plants, improve structure, manage moisture and control weeds, among other benefits. All organic materials will decompose, but you want the healthiest compost pile possible. In turn, for a successful compost pile, materials should be carbon- and nitrogen-producing and should be combined with enough water to keep moist. Here are a few examples of good and bad materials to include and omit in your own compost pile. Good for composting
  • Green materials like veggies, fruit scraps, coffee grounds and filters, tea bags and leaves and fresh grass clippings
  • Brown materials like dry leaves, straw, dried grass clippings, shredded paper, eggshells, nutshells and tree trimmings
Bad for composting
  • Anything treated with pesticides
  • Meat, fish and all dairy products
  • Grease and oily foods
  • Oil-based products, i.e., cooking oil
  • Bread products, which attracts pests
  • Diseased plants, which can transport fungal or bacterial problems
  • Human or animal feces
  • Cooked rice, since it can act as a breeding ground for bacteria
  • Raw rice, as it attracts varmints
These are just a few out of the many items beneficial for composting. Also, here is a helpful tip: Remember to chop your items into small pieces, as they will break down faster. For more good and bad compost items, visit our friends at Mother Nature Network, Treehugger and National Geographic.