I want to start but I really have no idea what I'm doing. What are my options? What's easy to do if you are a very small person? Advice would be delightful!

@bumblebees I could talk about compost forever. what do you have to work with? what's your goal?

@interneteh Wow, well I'm not sure what my options are for a goal? :) I want to use it for my yard garden. I'll have wood chips, bits of plants, and food bits, if that is the information you're asking for.

@bumblebees ok, so you have a yard. You can start making a compost pile. or you could make a bin from palettes or lumber. Wood chips are good for a "brown." Yard clippings, kitchen scraps are good greens. make sure your ratio is more browns than greens. the idea is to keep the pile moist light and aerated. So water and turn it often. when you add new stuff, like apple cores or coffee grounds or whatever, bury it in the middle of the pile. the ideal size is something like 3 ft by 3 ft by 3 ft

@bumblebees oh and also small particle sizes will break down quicker. so try to keep things chopped up.

@interneteh How exactly often do I need to water and turn it? I live in a very very dry climate by the way. Does it matter where it's located? Like directly in the sun and very close to where my garden actually is?

Thanks so much for the infos, I already feel much more confident!

@bumblebees you want to keep it about as moist as a well wrung sponge. don't drown it as this will smother aerobic bacteria and produce odor. A shady spot can be good for compost in a hot area because that will keep it from drying out too much. Dry compost will break down more slowly. You want to pick a site for it that is close to a water source. Keep it turned enough so that it stays light and easy to work. you don't want it becoming compacted. This will cut off the bacterial supply of air.

@bumblebees a compost pile that is working will produce its own heat. if you want to see how things are coming along, run a stick through the middle of the pile, then pull it out and feel it. if it's warm to the touch, bacteria are at work!

@interneteh Thanks very much for all the info! I know exactly where to put the pile now and what to do and how to check it. Thanks a ton :)

@bumblebees This might be helpful now, or else later when you gain more confidence: stuff rots. It’s inevitable. Pile it up. Wait patiently. Forget about it. Come back in a year or two. Voila! Compost.

@Fritillaria2 @bumblebees This is more or less my tactic, learned from my grandma's literal "compost heap."

But be aware of the critters in your area.

I live in farmland; all I get is possums (and a kitten, but we moved her inside). But if you live more urban, a closed container is a better bet.

Also: avocado pits are the weirdest thing. You will pull them out three years later, still fully intact.

Split them in half first (carefully).

@bumblebees on that note: eggshells.
They break down slooooow.

So we store them in a bin in the oven (they can get up to 350 without stinking and it pretty much sterilizes them) and then grind them up in the food processor when we get a batch. Then we sprinkle the eggshell dust/crumbles on the garden that way.

Note! If you do this, leave the food processor closed for a good 5 minutes before you open it. EGG DUST not fun.

@aldersprig Thanks for teh info! I'll definitely be thinking about those things. I had wondered how to grind up eggshells successfully too

@bumblebees If you don't eat a lot of eggs, a coffee grinder (cheapest electric sort) works too

If you want to go the easy way, you could just spread the wood chips and garden waste over your soil as mulch. They will slowly break down and release nutrients while protecting the soil.

For kitchen waste the easiest method might be a worm tower:

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