If you are thinking of starting a compost pile it can be a great way to break down the tree leaves, sticks, or any other organic material you may have to throw in. Nature is great at doing the job of turning life back into dirt. We also did some research on this subject and want to bring to you an excerpt from a book.
Title Trees Shrubs & Hedges for Home Landscaping
Author Jacqueline Heriteau
A mixture of decomposed organic materials, compost is an excellent soil conditioner and mulch. Just dig the stuff a few inches into the soil or spread it on top of the ground as mulch. Compost is the best way to dispose of garden wastes, autumn leaves, and plant-based kitchen refuse.
Some people get pretty scientific and painstaking when making compost. They use heat-trapping containers, measure heat inside the pile, and create precise mixes of additives to accelerate the process and control the end product. Yet compost can be made simply by letting a pile of plant wastes decompose on its own, with the aerating help of an occasional turning with a spading fork. The resulting compost is excellent, though the process takes longer.
You can cut the time by half or more if you chop the waste into small pieces *grinding up leaves ina lawn mower, a leaf blower-vacuum, or a shredder), keep the pile somewhat damp, and aerate it once or twice a week by turning or fluffing the mass with a spading fork. You can further speed the process, and improve the compost, by adding 2 cuups of a water-soluble high-nitrogen fertilizer to each 10-quart bag of leaves. If you have clayey soil, add 2 cups of gypsum as well. Substitute acid-type fertilizer if you plan to use the compost with acid loving plants.”
All that info is great. Along with that they even give you a guide on making a compost.
“This bin keeps compost materials from blowing around, promotes aeration, and confines a mass that retains heat inside the pile. If you turn the layered contents occasionally to promote aeration, you will have compost in a year or so. Note: Leaf compost, consisting only of leaves that haven’t been shredded, may take one to three years, depending on leaf sizes and types, and the climate.
Step 1. From the ½-inch wire mesh into a cylindrical bin about 4 feet in diameter by overlapping about 4 inches of the ends and securing them with heavy-duty twist ties.
Step 2. Place the bin directly on the soil. Or to deter foraging rodents, place the bin on a paved surface or on a square of ½-inch wire mesh. Use a plywood lid to shade the pile from drying sun and to shed rain whenever the pile becomes too soggy.”
As you can see by the book they break it down (no pun intended) to show exactly how to make a compost pile. We at Tree Service Anderson can tell you from experience that this method works like a charm. We also included a pic so you can see what they were talking about. Enjoy!