Composting: A Gardener’s Best Friend!

Composting: A Gardener’s Best Friend!

Compost is like magic for your garden! It enriches the soil, provides nutrients to plants, and helps combat drought by retaining moisture. Who would have thought that healthy soil could do so much? At Tips Tree Planting, we believe in harnessing the power of compost for a thriving garden.

Compost is created from food scraps and organic matter, which are packed with nutrients and water that would otherwise go to waste. In fact, did you know that 25% of our nation’s water is wasted on food that ends up being thrown away? By transforming waste into rich compost, we can tackle multiple environmental issues at once.

Ready to get started? LA County’s Smart Gardening program offers bins to help you begin your composting journey. But before you dive in, here are some essential DO’s and DON’Ts to keep in mind:

DO apply compost to your edible garden.

Adding 2 to 4 inches of compost to your soil will work wonders for your veggie garden. Incorporate it into the soil before planting your seeds or gently work it around existing plants, being careful not to disturb their roots. Your veggies will thank you!

DON’T apply too much compost around native plants.

Most California natives thrive with minimal nutrition in their soil, so it’s best to avoid going overboard with compost. In fact, excessive compost can speed up their growth and compromise their health. Instead, consider using mulch. A 4-inch layer of mulch on top of the soil will enrich it without harming your native plants. If you’re unsure which natives require richer soil, reach out to The Theodore Payne Foundation for guidance.

DO apply compost to trees.

Compost not only keeps your soil healthy, but it also houses beneficial microbes that retain water. To give your trees a boost, remove the existing mulch and apply a 2-inch layer of compost beneath the canopy area, making sure to keep it away from the trunk. Then, replace the mulch on top. Remember, a 4-inch layer of mulch is ideal for tree care.

DO apply compost to dirt.

There’s a difference between dirt and soil. Soil forms the foundation of all life, while dirt refers to soil that has been depleted of its essential nutrients. But don’t worry, because dirt can be rejuvenated with compost! Look for areas in your garden where the soil is compacted and water beads up instead of being absorbed. Add 2 inches of compost along with 4 inches of mulch. For an extra touch, consider sowing wildflower seeds to create pathways that bring water and life back to the soil, restoring the beauty of our planet.

Composting: A Gardener’s Best Friend!

At Tips Tree Planting, we’re passionate about helping you create a thriving garden. For more information and practical tips, visit our Tips Tree Planting website. We have a wealth of how-to videos and printable resources on our DIY page that will guide you on your composting journey. Together, let’s make our gardens greener and our planet healthier!