Freaking out over pests and smells? Hold your horses.
If you’re new to composting and have run into problems such as odors and pesky flies, we’re here to help!
First, let us tell you a bit about unpleasant smells. They happen when your compost pile is too wet or deprived of oxygen.
Here are some quick fixes:
- Mix in ‘browns‘ (such as shredded newspapers) to balance the moisture in your compost pile.
- Mix in some bulky ‘browns‘ (such as shredded empty toilet rolls) to introduce air pockets in your compost pile.
- With a garden spade or the opposite end of a broomstick, reach as deep into your compost pile as possible and give it a good wiggle! This will introduce air into your pile.
- Mix or turn over the compost pile once every few weeks (not too often) to aerate it.
- Lay sticks of lemongrass (pounded) on your compost pile. They help to ward off ants and some flies.
With regard to pests, they become attracted to your compost pile when it is emitting odor. You can simply fend them off by using one or more of the above solutions for smells.
Another common cause for pests and smells is the presence of unsuitable material in your compost pile. They include cooked food, pet litter, bones, bread, and meat. For more examples of material that you should avoid adding to your pile, click here.
If you’ve added unsuitable material, do remove it promptly or start your compost pile over.