Composting Is Mimicking Nature


Every living creature in the natural world eventually succumbs to death, decomposes, and returns its constituent parts to the ecosystem in which it was found. In the natural world, there is no room for waste. On the other hand, the corpses of plants and animals would never decompose in the absence of microbial activity. On a microscopic scale, a wide variety of bacteria and fungi are responsible for the breakdown of tissue that was once alive. Additionally, the availability of water and air has a significant impact on the kind of bacteria that are most successful in decomposing materials. Too much water and not enough air may create circumstances that are conducive for anaerobes, which will produce smelly byproducts. On the other hand, too little water and too much air may lead to a very sluggish decomposition process by anything, whether aerobic or anaerobic.

Temperatures in the surrounding environment are another factor that determine the pace of deterioration. Because the pace of microbial activity that consumes formerly live material works much quicker than it does in colder conditions, the soils in warm and tropical climates have less organic matter than soils in cooler regions. In addition, regions with very cold temperatures, such as the tundra, are characterized by the accumulation of vast layers of partly and wholly undecomposed plant material. When it’s freezing for the most of the year, the pace of decomposition is exceedingly slow, but variations in the rate of decay in the arctic environment have been recorded during the previous two decades (Sistla, 2013). In addition, despite the fact that there are a variety of models that predict what will happen to global soil carbon as a result of climate change (Wieder, 2013), it is a generally accepted fact that higher temperatures result in increased microbial activity and a more rapid consumption of carbon by soils.

The natural top-down process of degradation and integration may be seen in the woods and grasslands. While the dead roots of some grasses and trees may be found several feet below the surface in the subsoil, the deep roots of other plants can contribute to the subsoil as well. Therefore, the top layers of soil in natural settings will have a much higher concentration of organic matter than the lower, and further excavation will expose the fundamental components of the soil (the inorganic rock material).

This natural process of decomposition may be imitated and sped up using a controlled composting system, which results in the production of rich organic matter that can be used in gardens and crops that provide food. The finished product of composting is nature’s way of returning nutrients to developing plants in a form that may be used. However, carbon, nitrogen, potassium, and the many other trace nutrients only make up a portion of the picture. Plant matter that has decomposed over time helps to enhance the structure of the soil. According to the words written by Mr. Jeavons, “this indicates that the soil will be simpler to work, will have strong aeration and water-retention qualities, and will be resistant to erosion.” Instead of using pesticides, which eliminate beneficial soil life, “the greatest method to manage insects and illnesses in plants is with a live, healthy soil.” [Citation needed]

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