What is slow composting?
Jan 12, 2024, 10:30 AM
SALT LAKE CITY – “I have a compost bin to make my own compost from my fruit and veggie scraps. Do I need to add dirt or something else to break it all down?”
This was one of the questions Taun and Maria got on the KSL Greenhouse show last week, and it sparked an interesting discussion on slow composting.
To first answer the question, Taun suggested adding something similar to sawdust.
“It will kind of get slimy if all they’re putting into it is vegetable matter. If they could mix it with some sawdust just to help absorb some of the moisture, that will help out and it will make it better quality compost,” Taun said.
When asked if he has a compost bin himself, Taun said he instead uses a technique called slow composting.
He first takes the garden scraps out. Then, he either buries them in a trench 6 inches deep or lets them decompose naturally on his garden surface.
Burying is a good option that won’t attract animals. If it’s just something like potato peels, you can dump those on the soil surface and they should decompose within a week or two.
Make sure to do this with plant matter only. As long as you follow that rule, slow composting will improve your garden.
“Initially you’ll get a little release of nitrogen, but as those decompose it’s no different than any other organic matter,” Taun said.
Related: Master gardener program in Utah