How to avoid Mineral-Depletion in your food by Henk Niermans
The answer is quite simple;
Use homemade compost
- The benefits of using your own compost
- You have the minerals back in your food and therefore back in your body!
- After about 2-3 years you will see that there is less weed and the soil is more loose and easier to work in
- The time you can keep the fresh vegetables in your larder/fridge are longer
- Also over the years you will notice an improvement in taste
- By using compost for a number of years you will have less weed in your garden. (Is less work)
- Less waste for the tip
Growing your own vegetables with a lot of minerals can be easy.
People who have a garden can be growing their own vegetables and fruit.
For those who have no garden, can grow fruit and vegetables in pots, simply use big flower pots or anything else you can think of. Having no garden doesn’t have to be a problem because there are very small compost makers available which you can feed with all your kitchen waste.
You not only give yourself the best possible food but also you are reducing the amount of waste that goes to the tip.
- kitchen waste,
- garden waste
- some grass clippings
Also when you are weeding, leave a bit of soil on the weed and bring that to the heap. The more different weeds/plants that come in the compost-heap the better it will be.
You can put egg-shells in your compost heap but try to break them down as much as possible. When you don’t break them down you will find pieces of egg-shells in your garden and the calcium is not completely added to the soil/compost, it is up to you. You cannot go wrong here.
Never put citrus peels in the compost heap because most of them are treated with an anti fungus liquid. We need fungus to brake down the plant waste and do not forget the worms, they are very important in compost making.
Worms travel from top to bottom the whole day. Eat upstairs; go to the toilet downstairs and so on. This means that the best compost is in the bottom of the heap. Moist is also important and the way we are building our heap.
Now we know what to put in the compost heap, we can start making compost.
Making the compost
- 1. Make 3 spaces (3= minimum, 4 is better) next to each other.
- You can use some post as corners and nail some old boards to it.
- Every space has 3 sides and because they are next to each other you need only 4 sides and one long back connecting the 3 bins together.
- 2. In the first space we deposit all the garden and kitchen waste. Make sure that the garden waste is not bigger than about 2 inches or 5 centimetres.
- Cut bigger bits from scrubs because when scrubs grow older they are getting woodier.
- 3. We leave it there for about 2-3 months and turn it round every 2-3 weeks because by turning it round we bring air into the waste. This can be hard work but the results are rewarding. Without air we will get a stinking wet substance but with turning it round on regular basis we activate the process.
- 4. After about 3 months, we bring it all to the second space. In the first space we start again with fresh waste.
- 5. The second space has to be turned also every 2-3 weeks and after about 3 months moved to the last space. We now move space 2 to space 3 and space 1 to space 2.
- 6. After about 3 months, space 3 is ready to spread over your vegetable bed. It will be a very loose soil and gives a lovely smell. Also in the compost you will find lots of worms who are the most imported part of the whole process.
Make sure the compost heap is not to wet. When you see a lot of wood louse the compost is too wet. You can solve this by covering the first 2 heaps with a plastic sheet. However do not cover it 100% because than the air cannot circulate.
Growing comfrey is also a good way to bring minerals from very deep to the surface. The root system from comfrey goes very deep; some people say as much as 2-3 meters. By using the leaves in the compost or spread them out on your vegetables bed and let them rot away, we are improving the mineral content of the soil and therefore the minerals in our food.
By making your own compost you reduce your waste, have less weed and in the same time you have the minerals back in the food for you and your family.