I am a huge fan of composting for vegetable gardening. The end product is wonderful for your soil and also makes use of things that are otherwise discarded which end up on the refuse piles and leave a big carbon footprint. The home is full of unusual compost items that you may not have ever thought to throw on the compost pile.
Adding fresh organic matter that has been formed in compost piles is the perfect addition for your vegetable gardens. This organic matter nourishes both the plants and the soil, resulting in healthy plants and higher crop yields.
Most people know that you need both greens and browns in a compost pile and make use of garden waste and kitchen scraps, but their are loads of unusual items that can also be added that many people may not think of.
Unusual Compost Items
When it comes to composting there are some specific rules, such as the ration of green to brown (varies and depends on the pile but normally about 2 green to 3 brown). Other rules are no meat products or plastics.
But there are so many things out there that can be added to a compost pile and some are things you may not have thought of. That dog hair that you get in your vacuum cleaner is a perfect example.
Here are a few of the oddities:
- 100% cotton balls
- Used Matches
- Used Tissues
- Paper Towels
- Wine Corks
- Peanut shells
- Used Tea bags
- Used Coffee Grounds
- Contents of vacuum bags
- Pizza boxes (clean)
- Aquarium water
- Pet Hair
- Egg shells
- Old dried spices
- Human hair
- Dryer Lint
- Stale bread
- Bamboo skewers
- Toilet paper rolls
- Stale Bread
- Stale pretzels
- Plain cooked pasta
- Shredded junk mail
- Crepe paper streamers from parties
- Christmas tree (chop it up first with a wood chipper)
- Flowers from floral arrangements
- Hay bales when your decorations are over
- Alcohol from beer bottles after a party (moistens the pile and activates it)
- Wood ashes (be careful if you have low soil PH
- Paper back books – remove the linings.
As you can see the list in almost endless. Be sure to also see my list of items you should not compost.
Can you think of other things that would be good to add to a compost pile? Add them in the comments below.