The Benefits of Composting for the Home Garden

The Benefits of Composting for the Home Garden

A garden absolutely loves having compost added to it for extra nutrients and better soil health. Compost enriches the soil, suppresses plant diseases, assists in retaining water, and encourages beneficial fungi and bacteria. When you add compost to your garden, your vegetables and flowers rejoice. And you will too when you see the happy, robust plants and hefty harvests.

What is Compost?

Simply, compost is an organic material formed by the mixing of yard waste and food scraps. The mixed materials sit for a period of time until they break down and create rich, nutrient-dense humus.

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Gain free enriched soil for your garden. 

Compost is rich in nutrients like nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus which your plants need and love. It will protect your plants further if it is added as a top mulch because it will help the soil retain water, provide protection to plant roots, and suppress weed growth.

Adding compost to your garden doesn't just improve the soil for the one season either. It will benefit your garden for several years as it slowly releases its' nutrients.


Save money.

If you've done any type of gardening, you know the purchase of soil, specialty plant foods, and fertilizers can be expensive. The great thing about compost is that once you set-up your system, which isn't costly to do, then you don't have to buy anything else. The only cost is a few minutes of your time to maintain it every so often. 

Also, compost is the combination of food waste and yard scraps, items that otherwise would need to be thrown away somehow. Maintaining a compost bin means less food going into the regular trash which means lower garbage bills. If you have to take your own trash to the dump, this means fewer trips.


Lessen the overload on landfills.

We would all like to think landfills can take anything and are limitless, however, the truth is that our landfills are quickly filling up and soon we will not have space for our trash. If organic waste were a country, it would rank 3rd in its impact on global warming, after China and the US. This is an issue that should not be taken lightly. Everyone should be doing what they can to reduce waste that goes to landfills before we become overrun with our own trash. Composting takes a lot of items that would go in the trash and reuses them for the benefit of our earth instead of to its' detriment. Plus, those overflowing landfills are also producing methane gas which is not good for the environment at all.

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Reduce the need for chemical fertilizers.

Gardening chemicals, spread without thought or in excess, are killing off our bee and beneficial insect populations. We need these creatures so our vegetables can be pollinated and thrive. Eliminating the need for chemical fertilizers not only helps the health of your garden, but it also saves money too. When compost is added to a garden, there is much less need for chemical additions.


Is it hard to Compost?

Not at all. It takes a little diligence and some set-up to get started, however, the process of composting is really quite easy. Mother Nature does most of the work for you. All you need to do is provide the materials in specific amounts, give them a mix every so often, and let them decompose. It's not difficult to get started and the rewards are well worth it!

What do we do?

The Old School Nashville is constantly working to be more environmentally friendly. In 2018 alone, we composted 16, 875 lbs of organic waste. We work with Compost Nashville, who provide weekly pickup of our food scraps and deliver them to The Compost Company in Ashland City. They then get turned into nutrient-rich soil, which they donate on our behalf to various partner farms and food-based community organizations.