If you’re trying to grow vegetables organically in your Hartford garden, using a good compost is a must if you want healthy, productive plants. You can make your own compost at home from vegetable and lawn scraps, but you probably won’t be able to generate enough to provide your soil with sufficient nutrients. Luckily, you can easily purchase finished Organic Compost in Hartford CT at most lawn and garden stores. Still, not all compost is created equal. Here’s how to make sure you’re buying a well-made, nutritionally dense product.
Take a Whiff
High-quality, finished compost should not have an overwhelming odor. It shouldn’t smell rotten, moldy or like fresh manure. Healthy compost smells a lot like dirt: Subtle and earthy. If at all possible, take a good whiff before you purchase compost. If something doesn’t smell right, you shouldn’t add it to your garden. Unfinished or “hot” compost can literally burn your plants, inhibiting their growth or production or even killing them completely.
Examine It Closely
Although compost starts out as things like egg shells, vegetable peelings and lawn trimmings, the finished product should be indistinguishable from rich-looking soil. Before you buy compost, make sure it’s deep brown or black and is free of organic matter that hasn’t had time to break down sufficiently. As for texture, a good organic compost in Hartford CT should be loose. If there are clumps they should break apart easily.
Find Out What’s Inside
Compost can be made of many materials, and the best composts contain a diverse blend of ingredients that will increase the beneficial microbes in your soil. Ask about what was used to make the compost before you buy it or carefully read the list of ingredients. Some good ingredients to look for include seaweed, chicken manure, cow manure, fish, vegetable matter and straw. What to avoid? Try to steer clear of compost that contains lawn trimmings from an unknown source. Pesticide and herbicide residues can linger even after the grass has completely broken down into the compost.
A good organic compost made from a variety of materials will help your plants grow faster and stronger. If you’re purchasing store-bought compost, take the time to do your research and find the best quality product that’s available in your area.