How To Make Humus Rich Soil
It's a craze that has come to the ears of every home owner, and even many apartment dwellers. The secret gardening type that you hear everywhere but just can't seem to understand. Is it some neo-gardening tip or just an old farmer's language that you just can't translate?
It's a little bit of both actually. Unless you actually stop to check that old dusty dictionary on your shelf, humus will just seem like some illusive word you've never been able to define. Heck! Most gardeners couldn't even truly define it, though they might have a place of experience to start from.
So what is Humus?
To be frank, it's just organic compost. That's it!
For me, it started to make sense why my grandfather worked so hard to prune the bushes and trees just right. Why he never threw away anything that could be composted. It sounded like a comprehendible thing to care for everything so specifically, when it seemed like quackery when I was younger. He needed to have all the plants grow on time and as healthy as possible to provide for plant matter for his vegetables and other flora. It's like a cycle. Year round you take your left overs, the flora excess, tree leaves, grass trimmings, doggy dribblings and you put it in a pile to be turned into a continuous stream of humus rich soil.
So how do you make humus for your garden? Here are some simple steps:
#1. MAKE SPACE
Find a place in your garden bed where you can throw a large amount of food scraps, cardboard and other compostables.
#Alternatively# you may also use a metal garbage bin or some for of compost container if that floats your boat more.
#2. MAKE MATTER
This is probably the easiest part of this whole process.
You will want to put anything and everything into your compost pile. When you mow the lawn, but the trimmings into your pile and make sure to mix them so lots of air gets involved. Things that can go into your compost pile:
- Vegetable leaves
- Banana skins
- Onion skins
- Grass clippings
- Raked up leaves
- Egg shells, but not whole eggs
- Old newspapers
- Coffee filters
- Coffee grounds
DO NOT Add:
- Anything with chemicals, herbicides or pesticides, and that include lawn clippings that were treated with chemicals
- Any kind of animal food or meat
If you wouldn't want to it, don't feed it to your plants. Other than the pet manure of course, that will break down into nutrients that are very beneficial to the plant and soil.
A Word of Caution: Adding your own rear end recyclings can be a risk. Huma-nure (human manure), is so far one of the most infectious and toxic sources on the plant. Mostly because of what we eat, the kind of drugs we take or the things we breath in. If you are a health nut and don't take any medications, your huma-nure is probably great for the garden and it will save you on the water and sewer bill to do this. IF you take any pharmaceutical substances, drink to much alcohol, eat junk food/non organic food all the time or work in an environment with toxic inhalants, then DO NOT put your poo in the garden. There is no need to continue that cycle in your own body or to poison your plants with it.
#3. AS THE WORLD TURNS
As the world turns, so should your compost. My rule of thumb is that it should be turned over a few times at least once per day. This will help the composting process work faster and produce you more humus rich soil sooner, giving you the chance to use some in your garden nearly immediately, as well as the chance to add your fresh throw outs without causing the compost pile to spill out on the ground.
#4. MOISTURE BALANCE
In order to get a fine humus mixture, you will want to abstain from letting the compost get either too dry or too wet. You want a healthy moisture balance in order to maintain the constant composting process. Everyday when you go to turn the compost, check to see how it feels.
You don't actually have to touch it, though that is more direct. You can just place your hands slightly above the pile. Is it giving off heat? Does it seem cold? Does it look dry or really wet? When all else fails, dip your finger in the top of it and see how it feels. If it is very dry, you'll want to water it down decently. If it is really wet, you'll want to add more too it. Preferably more cardboard or other matter that is drier and takes a bit longer to break down.
#5. ADDING IT TO YOUR GARDEN
When the compost is a deep chocolate brown, clumps together well but also falls apart without a ton of force, then it is ready to place in your garden. When you mix it in, try to add some extra sand and colloidal silver to give your plant some extra boosts with the fresh humus.
Add the humus to the garden soil where you would like it and then take a trowel and turn, churn and mix it in. When you go to plant any large bushes, shrubs or small trees, you'll want to take a bunch of the humus and layer it down before you plant your plant.
Add the humus to your soil every chance you get to turn your soil into the most organic humus rich soil. around!
When you compost, you are helping your gardens soil. Just remember a few important points. Do not add animal food into the compost pile. That can cause many problems, like adding bacteria and attracting critters that you do not want in your compost pile. Adding animal products is not organic and this is not composting.
Be careful of adding too much grass clippings, this can suffocate the compost pile. Always remember to stir the compost pile and during dry weather, take the hose and wet it down.
There is a fine line with a compost pile between too wet and too dry. It can be very helpful to buy a composting bin, this will keep critters like mice out of the compost pile that you have on the ground.