6 Common Composting Mistakes -- So You Don't Make Them!


Who doesn't want the best possible soil for their garden? And if you can get it by recycling some of the everyday things that would otherwise go in the trash, all the better, right? Not so fast. If you've thinking of composting, you can't just chuck everything in there! 


More from The Stir: 8 Cool Vegetables to Plant in Your Garden This Spring (PHOTOS) 

We asked moms to share some of the biggest mistakes they've made while composting. Check out these cautionary tales, which may just save you from a backyard nightmare: 

1. Avoid Animal Bones

"My grandma has one and a few years ago, she threw some dead animals in hers, like chicken carcasses," recalls a CafeMom member who goes by the handle emeraldzineyez. "But, it made her backyard smell SO bad and she ended up having this slimy stuff in her compost, so she had to throw it all away in her trash and start a new pile. So she recommends only throwing plant-based stuff in there now."

"Meat products attract rats," adds CafeMom member AnotherKim.

2. Don't Forget to Stir It Up

"I did have a neighbor once come complain about my compost stink," says CafeMom member Anonymous 2. "I couldn't figure out what the problem was. Then I realized my grass clippings were super hot and molding and WERE horribly stinky. I felt bad. My bedroom was right there next to the pile, closer than theirs was, but the wind usually blew their direction so I never smelled it. I went out and stirred it around so they were mixed in and put an end to that. Nobody wants to be the stinky neighbor."

3. Skip the Dryer Lint

"Dryer lint and shredded paper -- for some reason it matted into a clump across the whole pile and I ended up with a rock hard sheet that did not compost at all," says a CafeMom member who goes by the name Elizabooks. "Now, like my chicken bones, I burn the paper in the ashes of my grill. That helps the soil and cuts down on the earthy smell."


4. Don't Put It Near the House 

"I put mine too close to the house and we got horrible fruit flies in my master bedroom. There wasn't even any food there. It was gross so I got rid of it," says a CafeMom members who goes by the name cookiemonster77.

"My biggest mistake was putting it too close to the house...opened it up and found a snake eating a mouse...almost died," recalls CafeMom member Anonymous 7. "I made my husband get out there and relocate it about 200 feet from the back door. I don't think I put anything in it for a month after that!"

5. No Pet Feces

"Cat and dog droppings contain diseases," points out CafeMom member Bmat.

6. Don't Tend to It in Flip Flops

"I live in the desert. My biggest issue is that I forget to 'water' my bin.  Then, when I do go water it, all kinds of nasties, including scorpions, come running out at me. I only water in boots now," says Menopause Maniac.

Do you compost? If so, have you made an mistakes? 


Images via Marina Lohrbach/shutterstock; kaarsten/shutterstock

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