The process of compost formation

Today in Gardenprue more than an article, we want to show an image that is worth more than everything we can tell about the compost formation process. There has been a long talk about the composting process, the raw materials, the processes, the organisms and the conditions of its formation. A photograph in which the compost formation process is clearly seen , from its most mature and decomposed layer to the primary plant remains.


Explain in a simple and practical way the composting process in a blog, it is always the less complicated or at least it is intangible. There is talk of humification, organic matter, C / N ratio, mature compost , young…. an endless number of variables and parameters that can be overwhelming if the subject has never been discussed.

Saying that organic matter becomes compost after a while and as a consequence of highly active biological processes, it is easy to say. But are we really aware of it? In a compost pile we put everything. It seems that it is something magical that happens without more. You throw a pile of vegetable matter into a “bucket” and …… tachán! we have compost. Anyone who has ever done it knows that there is nothing magical about it. You have to be aware of many things, including:

  • Temperature : For a compost to be formed, the violent reaction phase thermally speaking has to exist and this is achieved with a volume of compost not less than 1m³
  • Humidity: We have to monitor the humidity of the process. Too much can cause unwanted rotting, anaerobic reactions and a poor finish of the final product.
  • Aeration: If there is something that is really important, it is the turns. Turning aerates, homogenizes and we will achieve better results in less time. Remember that one of the keys to the article on quick compost was continuous turning.
  • C / N ratio : We cannot forget it either. Too much nitrogen produces very violent reactions and an unbalanced compost. Too much carbon and the temperature will not rise to the recommended point. Remember that the proportion that is considered as ideal is 1:30 although it allows variations.

With this we just want to summarize in brief notes everything that has been said about compost in this blog that although it seems a lot, it really is not so much. We’ll keep talking about him, that’s for sure. We only want to show an image that we have had the opportunity to see today of a composter, in which it is possible to observe with great clarity how the different moments of decomposition of the plant remains are stratified until it becomes a compost, balanced, with good color, smell and ready to be used in our garden or garden (bottom). There it goes:

With this image we want to encourage anyone who has never made their own compost. You can go wrong once, twice at most, but like everything is a matter of trial and error and learning. Of course, the presence of worms is more than assured as you can see in the following photo:

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