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How to Compost in the Winter

How to Compost in the Winter

Posted by Amy Renae on Oct 20th 2021

As you are dreaming about spring, there are a few things you can do to prepare for it during the dog days of Winter. One way is to make a compost pile. Compost is very handy to have in the spring and summer to help give plants the nutrients they need. There are just a few extremely simple collection techniques in the winter to make compost. One consists of a bowl to put table scraps into it. Do this when you are preparing a meal and will have several things to toss in. It look like this:

A bowl like this can sit on the counter for a few minutes (or hours), but not a few days. The bugs get hungry too. Make sure you use a better method if you aren't going to dump it right away.

Dump it where? Well, if you are like us, you don't want to trek to the compost pile in the snow even if it is only 15 feet away from your back door. It is just not fun on a regular basis. So, the trick is twofold. Get an old coffee container with a lid. If you have a few things to throw in for a few days, it usually goes in there. Sometimes just toss whatever is in the bowl out. It's not a science really.

Find a pot for outside by your backdoor. Leave a little bit of soil in it leftover from an old plant (like 2-5 inches). This soil still has little microbes in it that eat peels and shells and turn it into compost. Dump the little loads of garbage and scraps into this pot without stepping outside and the microbes start in on it. PS, you cannot do this is in the summer. It is too hot and your food will attract animals and stink if you don't cover up that green layer (food stuff) with some brown (soil or leaves or newspaper). 

Dump your goodies into a pot with a little soil. Let it sit until it's full, then take it to the real compost pile.

What is a real compost pile? Simple.

A bigger version of your pot with a little soil (brown) and a little food scrap goodness (green). 

Just toss what you've got on a big pile. Try to put in dead things like leaves and "live" things like banana peels and plants.

If it stinks, add more brown things. 

Are you wondering how to keep a compost pile from looking awful? The truth is, you can't really. It is garbage. You can hide it however!

In the winter, it is harder to hide, but it is no big deal because how many people are strolling through the back of the garden anyway? You can also decorate your pile with old flowers.

Not really...just joking about the decorating part. It still looks horrible. Just hide it. Then let the little microbes do their work. 

Turn the whole pile once spring comes and watch it turn into a pile of what looks like dirt. Spread that dirt (COMPOST!) on your soil around your living plants in the growing season, and watch your beautiful flowers bloom.