If you haven’t already started a compost pile or natural fertilizer bin, you have some catching up to do. However, it is never too late to begin making your own fertilize since it doesn’t go bad and can be used year round. Simply by recycling some common household items and mixing them with some natural outdoor goodies, you can have the richest fertilize in your North Georgia neighborhood.
- Coffee grounds > When you finish your morning coffee and start to clean the pot, do not throw away those coffee grounds. Allow them to dry out by spreading them on a cookie sheet and leaving them in the oven under the light for a few hours. Once they have dried, add them to a compost pile somewhere on your property where earthworms can be encouraged.
- Earthworms > Earthworms are natural little tillers of the soil. They do three things really well – eat, poop, till the earth. Encourage earthworms by first softening a four-foot by four-foot patch of earth. Add fruit and vegetable peels, expired fruits and vegetables, dried coffee grounds, and dried egg shells.
- Egg shells > Egg shells are loaded with calcium. Plants need calcium to thrive. Allow your shells to dry out, then crush, and add to the compost bin.
- Rabbit poop > Rabbit droppings are basically odorless. What you smell, if you raise rabbits, is urine. Rabbit urine has a strong odor, but the pellets do not. If you raise rabbits, make a point of placing the cage next to the compost bin. Just scoop the poop and add to the bin. Earthworms love rabbit poop, which is basically digested vegetation.
- Seaweed > If you are lucky enough to have seaweed growing around you, pick a large bunch and add them to a five-gallon bucket. Add enough water to cover the plants and allow them to soak for a week or more. The odor will be a bit fishy for a couple of days, but it will dissipate. Pour the entire mix onto the compost bin. This will add needed nutrients for your plants.
- Shredded newspaper > If you have run out of ideas to use up old newspapers, try shredding them to add to the compost bin. Most all plant material, as it breaks down, adds nutrients to the soil. pine straw and dried leaves are also good for composting.
Before you throw something away, ask yourself if it has any value as a part in the making of fertilize. You could have the richest earth in the neighborhood for growing vegetables, shrubs, fruit and nut trees, and berries. Nothing beats free and a nutrient-rich fertilize is yours for the making.
Oh, and don’t forget to put back any earthworms you uncover as you work the compost or scoop some up to use in the garden.