Please Note this article will also be published in Muslim Youth Newsletter : One Voice.
You open the fridge and you realize that your leftovers, your vegetables and that weird thing that you cannot recognize all went bad and fungus is growing all over it and you think to yourself time to throw it all out and commit sin by wasting food, but wait there is a solution and it is called composting.
Composting is recycling of household and yard waste into fertile soil that can be used for gardening, soil refurbishing or as a fertilizer. Typical compost can be made from – but not limited to – animal manure, vegetables, leaves, grass clippings and hay. It is made in piles of 4-6ft high, 5 ft wide, and 5 ft long and placed approximately 2-6 in deep in the ground. Typical compost is usually layered into three layers, earth, manure which is nitrogen rich and plant matter which is carbon rich, like leaves. Decomposing can take anywhere from two – four months and when complete, smells rich, earthly and fertile.
Why should you compost? Firstly you will utilize all food waste and all those annoying leaves and turn it back into soil. This can be used to fertilize your garden, for your lawn, or plants. Secondly you will help the planet, by not sending your food to landfills where they remain there for a very long time. Can you believe that more than 35 million tons of food get dumped in landfills where they decompose very slowly in anerobic (that without oxygen) environment. Thirdly and hopefully you might get reward (Allah knows best) if you use your new compost to help grow trees (since you definitely will get reward if you grow trees). I would recommend you give it a try (with your parents’ permission of course), you will get an excuse to play with dirt and actually make something this summer. But remember, you will need patience as it takes 3-6 month for the food to decompose.
Make sure you read about it before you start by either checking out the following website or by reading the following book (can be found in a Library)
1) Let it Rot by Stu Campbell 2nd edition. Published by Storey Communications Inc., 1990.
“Compost How and Why.” By River Rock Gardens. <http://www.rivenrock.com/compost.htm>