How Compost , Adds Special nutrients to the soil, fruits, and vegetables
Compost influences the health of the soil, and the plants by improving their growing conditions.
The use of high-quality organic compost is one of the essential ways to ensure bountiful agricultural yields without harming the environment.
In this article, we will look closely at the nutrients and trace elements that compost adds to the soil, and farm products.
By Better Homes and Gardens
What is Compost?
Compost is an organically recycled fertilizer derived from the decomposition under aerobic conditions of plants and much other microbial matter.
There are different types of composts with distinct peculiarities depending on what is used in making the compost, how the composting process is managed, and its degree of ripening.
To get quality compost, it is important to treat everything about the composting process with utmost care.
A good compost adds fine elements to both plants and the soil.
Indeed, the microbial content of quality compost is all that the soil needs to be as fertile as your garden crops needs.
What should be added to compost?
As with the formation of humus, the microorganisms and microorganisms do the main work in composting.
Therefore, when composting, it is crucial which “food” these creatures can digest best.
It should be noted here that there are differences as to whether the waste ends up in your compost heap in the garden or the organic waste bin and is sent to industrial composting.
For example, leftovers from cooked food and above all meat do not belong on the open compost heap in the garden, as they attract vermin.
However, households are allowed to throw them in the organic waste bin.
In addition to the biowaste from the organic waste bin, the composting plant mainly composts garden and park waste as well as regional waste from the food processing industry.
How does waste become compost?
Composting is a natural but technically controlled process.
The natural conditions for the formation of humus in the soil are simulated and optimized.
With the help of the oxygen in the air, microorganisms and microorganisms convert most of the organic material into humus.
In-home garden composting, this process usually takes 1 to 2 years.
For industrial composting, the environmental conditions are kept at an artificial optimum and the same processes are greatly accelerated.
Weather-related temperature and humidity fluctuations are eliminated and the microorganisms always find optimal conditions for their work.
Whether the processes for composting have started can be determined, among other things, by the temperature.
Because the microorganisms and microorganisms generate heat when converting the organic waste.
In the garden, you can see that the compost heap is already steaming.
At the same time, the heat development also provides information about the rotting status, i.e. when the compost is ready.
The more the compost heap cools, the more mature it is.
Effects of compost on soil and diseases
Compost is not just a fertilizer. It also has effects on the soil and the resistance of plants to diseases.
The effects of compost on the chemical and physical properties of soils are a supply of nutrients (macro and trace elements), a supply of stable organic matter, an improvement in the structure of the soil, and better penetration and retention of soil.
water, reduced erosion, and increased pH.
It also affects soil biology.
Indirectly, the improvement of all these factors also influences plant health.
A trial was carried out in a field, half of which received compost each year and the other half did not.
The samples taken were mixed with a pathogen.
Plants growing in soil from the half of the field with compost were significantly less attacked by the disease than plants growing in soil without compost.
In the open field,
In addition to this protection against pathogens, quality compost can also stimulate the defenses of the whole plant.
This resistance is induced by the micro-organisms in the compost and makes the plants healthier and more vigorous.
The Effect of compost on plants and soil in summary:
- The nutrients present in the compost are gradually circulated over a long time, depending on the weather conditions which protect the soil and plants;
- Compost may contain pathogens or weed seeds, and under unfavorable conditions, nitrogen can be leached out of it
- Humus molecules can – especially in combination with clay minerals – form stable crumbs that loosen the soil, bind nutrients and water and also make heavy soil more permeable to water, which improves the growth conditions for plants
- The darker coloring and better soil aeration promote faster soil warming, allowing plants to start growing earlier in the spring
- Compost offers an optimal breeding ground for the important microorganisms in the soil
How to get the best of composting?
Define desired goals and needs
The Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL) rightly notes that the right preparation and application of composts is vital for crop cultivation, and yield.
In other words, your garden’s fluorescence is dependent on what compost you choose or make, how you decide to apply it when you apply the compost and the quantities used.
It is also important to think about the intended purposes before getting or making compost.
For your composting to be a success, it is essential to evaluate both economic, ecological, and cultural needs and to analyze:
- the goals sought (medium-term improvement of the soil structure, supply of fertilizers available in the short term, protection of plants against diseases);
- crop needs and limitations;
- the technical aspect of spreading;
- the economic situation in the medium and long term.
Collaboration and dialogue between the players in the sector, namely compost producers and plant producers, are essential in the development and implementation of optimal strategies for the benefit of the farmer.
Good compost helps soil fertility and crop yield in more ways than one.
One of the ways is through the formation of humus in the soil, improvement of soil structure, and its water retention capacity.
Among other things, the “humus-C” content contributes to this.
This is a measure of the humus-forming carbon in the compost.
The humus-building effect of compost usually only becomes apparent after years of use.
Compost is well suited to improve sandy and low-yield locations.
It also helps the plants by providing them with the requisite trace elements for good yields.