1. Layer one part green materials with two parts brown materials:
Green Materials with High Nitrogen Content Include:
- Grass, Weeds and Non-Woody, Garden Prunings
- Spent Flowers, Bouquets
- Farm Animal Manures (cow, horse, chicken, sheep)
- Fruit and Vegetable Garden Scraps
- A Sprinkling of Blood Meal or Cottonseed Meal
Use one part greenor one-third of the compost pile.
Brown Materials with High Carbon Content include:
- Dry Leaves
- Dead Brown Plants or Potted Plants
- Pine Needles
- Finely-Chopped Woody Brush
Use two parts brown or two-thirds of the compost pile
2. Sprinkle a half-inch of soil or manure compost every few layers to provide the microorganisms necessary for the decomposition process.
3. Add water to keep the pile as damp as a wrung-out sponge.
4. Mix or turn periodically with a garden fork. Microorganisms need oxygen and small particle size. The more often you turn the pile, the quicker it breaks down.
Notes: Do not add meat, dairy products, diseased plant material, dog or cat wastes to a backyard compost pile. A compost pile made with predominately green materials (i.e. grass) may become soggy and release unpleasant odors. If this happens, break the heap apart and rebuild it, adding layers of brown materials and turn more often to dy out the pile.
One part green and two parts brown, helps the organics turn into compost. Add some water and some soil. Turning is the only toil.
Source: Michigan Department of Natural Resources