How to Compost Efficiently At Home?

Composting at home is a good way to recycle daily wastes into valuable fertilizer, whilst minimizing environmental impact. 

However, composting can be a headache and takes a long time if you’re not doing it in the right ways. Are there efficient ways to make your composting journey simpler and faster? The answer is YES! 

Keep reading to find out how to compost efficiently at home.


Compost Right Materials

Garden and kitchen wastes comprise varied waste materials, of which about 30 % are compostable. It’s only by selecting the right compostable material that you reap a swift and efficient decomposition process.


What to Put in Compost

compost pile
Photo by Edward Howell on Unsplash

For efficient decomposition of the pile, you need to blend brown and green materials.

The brown refers to the materials which are rich in carbon, including dead branches, leaves, twigs, hay, and corn stalks.  They are foods to the microorganisms that support aerobic decomposition of the pile. 

The greens are the materials rich in nitrogen, including coffee grounds, grass clippings, and kitchen scraps. Green materials have superior moisture retention ability, and they fuel the lives of microbes in the compost pile. However, if you put too much green into your compost pile, it may cause a bad smell. 

In general, a ratio of 3 to 4 parts brown to 1 part green works best, but you don’t always need to be exact about it. The easy way to follow is to use 50% brown and 50% green, that can also work without issue. 


What Not to Put in Compost

You also need to pay attention to the things which are not recommended to put into your compost pile. To ensure your compost process is healthy and productive, avoid the following items:

  • Pet waste (may produces unpleasant odours and is sometimes hazardous to human beings)
  • Meat, bones, and dairy products (may attract rodents and flies, and create odours) 
  • Inorganic wastes and plastic (may release toxic chemicals when they break down)
  • Coloured or glossy papers (may contain either thin plastic or aluminium films)
  • Diseased plants (may introduce harmful fungi and pests to the valuable soil microbes)


3 Efficient Methods to Compost At Home

Besides the right materials, choosing an efficient compost is also important to shorten the composting period. There are three ways you can consider using them when you’re composting at home.

Bokashi Composting

Bokashi composting is a fermentation process that blends effective microorganisms to produce valuable plant nutrients. Traditional composting takes months. But the Bokashi process requires only 2 to 4 weeks to produce ready pre-compost and liquid fertilizer.

Besides being swift, bokashi composting has a plethora of benefits. It requires minimal attention, takes smaller space, and allows you to compost throughout the year. So you never run out of nutrients packed humus. 

All you need is bokashi bran, a bin, and kitchen scraps. At the bottom of the bin spread the brown materials followed by greens then sprinkle a few tablespoons of the bran. Compress the layer to be 5cm thick or less. 

Repeat the pattern until you fill-up the bin. Seal the lid and give it two weeks to ferment. Every other day, drain off leachate from the bokashi bin and dilute it with water in the ratio of 100 to 1, you will get a great liquid fertilizer. 

And at the end of two weeks, you will have pickled mixture in your bokashi bin which are the “pre-compost” materials.  Bury them into your garden with two more weeks, you’re ready to plant with a great soil base. 


Image provided by author



Vermicomposting is also called worm composting. This composting method taps on worms to recycle kitchen wastes and other biodegradable materials into beneficial humus for soil and plants. 

As the worms continuously feed on the compost materials, they break them down into smaller bits. Their excreted worm castings can boost soil fertility and help plants grow strong and healthy. 

Vermicomposting lets you hire the worms to do the demanding task for you. The easy setup, the footprint of space requirement, silent and order-free composting are more reasons to try out vermicomposting. You can even set it up in the basement. 

During setup, get the location of the bin right. Let the moist browns occupy a third of the bin as beddings. Then add the right worms, keep the bin moist and feed the worms with food scraps weekly. 

After a few months, you will have rich, dark composted matter with the worms in your bin. Screen and sort out undigested organic matter, you will harvest the perfect worm castings!


Electric Composting

An electric composter is also termed a food recycler. It’s an indoor composting machine that uses electricity to aerate, dry, pulverize and grind waste into fertilizers within 3 to 48 hours.

Its internal temperature of 160 degrees helps to sterilize, decompress the material and minimize their smell.

When you incorporate the output of an electric composter into the soil, it decomposes fast to act as a fertilizer. Whereas some compost takes months, an electric composter takes only hours. Besides, it is indoor friendly and accepts a wide range of compostable materials that other methods can’t recycle. 


Final Thoughts

Making an efficient composting process is not difficult. As long as you select the right materials and method, you can turn your waste into perfect fertilizer in a relatively short time. Just have a try and happy composting!



Tiffany Lei

Tiffany is the founder at Garden Guidepost. She is passionate about gardening and hopes to inspire more people to adapt to the gardening lifestyle and start composting.

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