I hear there’s been a surge in people starting Gardens which is awesome.
In fact I’ve had tons of friends reaching out to me for advice as well.
The most important thing when starting a garden is to compost because composting helps you build the nutrients in your soil so that you can grow all your fruits and vegetables.
Composting all of your household food is actually kind of a two-for-one. It’ll reduce tons of waste that goes into the trash can and it’ll build your soil so let me show you how
we compost that’s the easiest way that generally just about anybody can do.
So we actually do four types of composting we have our chickens which are the cutest composters around. We also have worms and we have a garden compost but
by far the easiest is a Bokashi system.
The reason this is the easiest is because you can put anything in it.
You can even put citrus even meat bones and it will all compost down. So I’m going to walk you through each step as to how the Bokashi compost system works.
So this is a Bokashi composting system it really consists of a bucket with a nozzle at the bottom to let the liquid out and I’m going to show you how it works.
First thing I like to do is actually put some water in here to make sure that I don’t have any leaks because if you do have a leak it can really smell up your garage or wherever you’re keeping this.
So this bucket looks good and the first thing you do is you put
the bottom holder on and then you put a layer of bran. Let me show you what this
bran this is the magic of Bokashi composting this will help create the
pickling or the micro organisms to break down the food so you basically put a
small layer of this at the bottom.
You don’t need to have a lot just to kind of cover it and now we are going to add our food scraps into the compost. So all you’d really do is take whatever food scraps you’ve got from the last day or two and you take your handy dandy tool because you want to press these layers
down so they’re as tight as possible.
Bokashi composting is different than other composting because you we want to remove all the oxygen. So I’m gonna add the Bokashi bran on top and you really just need a thin layer so that all the food is covered and then you’re gonna press this down. Then each time you add a new layer of food you’ll add a new layer of bran on top.
Layer after layer until this whole bucket is full. In the meantime all
you need to do is go ahead and close this and I’ll show you what’s next.
Alright we’re on our way.
The only thing you need to do is you fill your bucket up is every few days but at least once a week drain the liquid out. But first it can be a lot of liquid. I will often discard that but after that it tends to come out as a trickle and might be really dark. I take that and mix that with water it’s pretty powerful stuff so you actually need to mix it at about a hundred to one ratio. Generally for me if I fill up my whole watering pail that’s enough dilution. This is great nutrients for the plants and even fights bugs. So I put that directly onto the plants and into the soil. Once you’ve filled it to the tippy-top just close it up and wait two weeks.
The only thing you have to do in the meantime is drain it every few days to get the liquid out. All right let’s fast-forward two weeks the next step is to find an empty place in your garden or yard that you can dig a hole because the Bokashi system happens in two phases.
The first phase has been happening over the last couple of weeks in the bucket. The food is actually being fermented now we’re gonna move on to the next phase, where in the soil it’s going to finish composting.
I like to dig a hole that’s about twice as big as the food you just really want to make sure that there’s plenty of soil on top of the food. All right let’s get this food into the hole. The first time I did this I was surprised that all the food kind of still looked like food. I recognized a lot of the stuff. But this is exactly what it should look like again what’s happened here is the pre composting process next it’s actually going to compost into the soil.
All right I bet you’re curious what’s going on into the soil. So let’s fast forward two more weeks and dig up to see what things look like. I have to admit the first time I did this I was pretty
skeptical as to what this was gonna look like.
Most composting systems take many months before everything’s ready to add to the soil. So you’re starting to see that yep there’s definitely still some food that you can tell in there but wow this looks completely different than two weeks ago when we put this into the soil.
So I’ll smooth this out again and show you what this looks like in three weeks.
So let’s dig this up and see what it looks like.
Different already for sure see a little bit of food there but this has really
composted beautifully into the soil.
Take a look at how that soil looks. At three weeks I turn this thoroughly and then smooth it out and then this is really ready for planting. This soil is full of healthy microbes and bacteria that will really nurture your plants as they grow.
Oh yeah and the question I get a lot people ask me does this make your soil too acidic. So let’s take a look.
Ideal soil should have a pH reading between six and seven so where are we at on this soil?
Ready for planting for planting.
So how’s this look after we’re all done? I dug up some soil just from next to the bed this is what the native soil looks like it’s very clay-ie grainy even a little bit rocky once you’ve composted the soil you can smell and see the nutrients in the soil.
You can actually smell a little bit of the nitrogen when you when you ball… when you create a fist it creates like a little bit of a ball and this is just full of nutrients that the plants eat.
Sure you can go buy already pre composted soil from Home Depot or Lowe’s but this is the best soil you can do. It’s free for you to bring all these nutrients into the soil by doing your own composting and this is why homegrown vegetables taste so much better if you really have great soil.
So I hope this has inspired you to get your food scraps out of the landfill and into your soil and if you want to start Bokashi composting check out the link in the description below to
get a system for yourself. Thanks for watching and happy composting.
Hi we’re the zero waste family. We are sharing our story in how we are raising our three children zero waste, plant-based, and mindfully minimal on an urban homestead. We live
just ten minutes from downtown San Diego.
We grow most of our own food with the goals of being sustainable and self-reliant.
In our ebook “Zero Waste for Families” we are sharing inspiring tips and recipes for how to reduce waste with kids. Thank you for watching and enjoy