So, it’s the new year and many people make lofty goals including weight loss, being more patient, and living a greener life. While winter is not the time most people think of to get started on their compost, I think it is one of the best times to get started! Why? Well, what’s the main reason people don’t compost? The smell. You have a little while to get in the swing of things before you really start some good decomposition and you have to worry about the smell and bugs.
Let’s start with why someone would want to compost in the first place. After all, it is a fair question in this age of convenience.
1. Less garbage in landfills
This is one of the most obvious reasons, but I think we underestimate how much garbage each person contributes to the landfills in our areas. One estimate is that each person contributes 1,600 pounds of garbage to landfills a year and from this same source, “With the garbage produced in America alone, you could form a line of filled-up garbage trucks and reach the moon.” WOW! Obviously, many steps need to be taken to alleviate this issue, and composting is a great step to move forward in that direction. Read more here about the mass amounts of garbage we create each year.
2. Fresh, healthy soil to use
What better way to motivate yourself to start a garden than to have ready to use soil in your backyard? Even though I’m due in April, and prime gardening season starts in May, I’m having a hard time thinking of turning down the compost I have ready this year! Even if you can’t or won’t be using your finished compost, you can actually sell it on Craigslist!
3. Teach your family about the cycle of life
Whether you homeschool or not, you can teach your family to think beyond what they can take in, but what happens to those things when we are done with them? What happens with that styrofoam cup? Why can’t we put it in the compost? What happens after we put the fruits and veggies in the bin and what bugs are helpful and what ones are pests? I’m guilty of spending far too much time inside and letting electronics entertain me on a day to day basis. Having something that makes you step outside and take care of a natural habitat is a great way to bring your appreciation back to Allah’s creation.
4. Save money
Lower your garbage collection bill by getting a smaller bin, and after a year or so you won’t have to buy as much soil to put into your garden! If you’re just starting a garden, of course growing your own food is a great way to save money, too!
I’ve found that by having a compost, I’m more mindful of how much garbage I pick up in my every day errands. Do I need a cover when I get something at Dairy Queen? No. Do I need a plastic bag around each item of produce? Nope. Just getting that ball rolling starts a snowball effect of positive changes that make an impact on the garbage you produce, but also your mindset!