Are you looking for Compost Citrus? Read to know more. Composting is one of the most interesting and beneficial activities that you can do in your garden. It is favourable to human health and environmental health too. By adding the food waste to get composted, you are making the best use of that waste.
On composting the waste turns into nutritional elements for your plants. For some gardeners, composting is just adding the piles of anything that once had life. However, it is more than this and it could be treated as an art.
There are many myths regarding the things that could be composted. These myths say that not everything can be composted including citrus too. There has always been a debate whether citrus can be composted or not.
It is true that citrus is hard to get composted as it is high in acidic content and can also attract flies, leave an unpleasant smell all around, etc. Despite all these misconceptions, there is an answer to the question that yes, you can compost citrus but with proper conditions.
There is a lot that you have to keep in mind when composting citrus. Here is all that you need to know about citrus composition.
- 1 The Myths Related To Composting Citrus
- 1.1 Types Of Citrus Fruits That You Can Compost
- 1.2 Things To Know Before Composting Citrus
- 1.3 What To Do If Citrus Is Mouldy?
- 1.4 Benefits Of Adding Citrus In The Composts
- 1.5 FAQs: Can You Compost Citrus?
- 2 Wrapping Up
The Myths Related To Composting Citrus
There are several misconceptions related to citrus composition. Different people have different reasons for not composting it. One myth is that it is impossible to decompose the peels of citrus.
So, it automatically becomes needless to add it in the compost. Another myth says, microorganisms and worms get killed due to the acidic environment which is created by the citrus piles.
It is also believed that it contains pesticides so it must not be added to the garden soil. This is the reason citrus is avoided for composting as the chemicals present inside it are used for manufacturing pesticides. However, all these myths could be busted or have some ways to work around and citrus could be composted easily.
Types Of Citrus Fruits That You Can Compost
Now, when you know that citrus can also be composted then it is equally important to know what types of citrus fruits can be put in compost. Let’s take a look at various citrus fruits and whether they are compostable or not.
- Orange: If you are thinking of composting orange or orange peels, then there is no harm in it. You can compost all the varieties of orange including blood oranges, navel oranges, etc. As oranges are rich in nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, it will definitely benefit your compost pile.
- Lemon: You can also add lemon and its pile to your compost. However, being more acidic when compared to oranges, lemons should be added in the compost in a lesser quantity. If added in a large quantity, it will take the acidic environment to another level. You can also add brown materials that are rich in carbon so that the acidic level gets maintained.
- Grapefruit: As grapefruits are larger in comparison to any other citrus fruit, it is essential to add grapefruits in small quantities. Here also adding brown materials would be an advantage. Grapefruit contains moisture so keep in mind what amount of moisture you are adding to the pile. If it is excessive, do soak before keeping the grapefruit in the compost pile.
- Lime: Lime also has a high acidic level like all the other citrus fruits. So, when you are adding lime or lime peels in your compost pile, do not forget to add brown materials for balancing the acidic levels. Shredded cardboards and dried leaves will be a great help for keeping the pile in neutral conditions.
Things To Know Before Composting Citrus
If you are properly adding citrus to the compost pile then it is absolutely safe. However, composting citrus is not as easy as other materials so there are some important points that you must consider before composting it.
- The high acidic levels of citrus fruits could be harmful for your pile. It is important to balance the acidity in order to decompose the citrus faster. Do not forget to add the things that are more alkaline so that the pH level of the compost pile remains neutral.
- Moisture level is another important thing that you will have to keep in mind. The citrus peels have more water content so balance out the moisture before adding it in the piles. You can also add some dry materials to resolve this issue.
- Temperature and timing also play an important role when you are composting citrus. The best time to do this is the warmer months as the temperature needed to compost citrus ranges between 50 degree celsius to 60 degree celsius. If the temperature is less than this then it can take too much time and if the temperature goes higher, it would kill the worms and microorganisms.
- Size of the peels also matters a lot. The larger the peels will be, the more time it will take to get decomposed. Cutting them into small pieces will allow them to compost it faster. You can also use a sharp knife or food processor to cut down the citrus fruits into small parts. This will allow a larger surface for good bacterias and microbes which eventually fasten the decomposition.
- You can add some materials that are rich in nitrogen levels. These materials will boost the decomposition process and you will see the result even faster. Peanut shells, coffee grounds, etc. are some of such materials.
What To Do If Citrus Is Mouldy?
There is no doubt that citrus gets moulded faster. As the moulded and rotten citrus is already decomposing then it would definitely be an excellent idea to add it in the compost pile. However, you will have to be careful as the moulded citrus remains wet.
The pile must have a high temperature so that the spores get killed inside it. Adding some bulking agents will do a great help in speeding up the procedure. These materials could be shredded cardboards or wooden chips which will help in balancing the conditions.
Benefits Of Adding Citrus In The Composts
No matter what misconceptions people have regarding the citrus composition, it is true that adding citrus in the composts has its own benefits. Read more to know the benefits:
- The citrus fruits are very high in nutrients including potassium, nitrogen and phosphorus. All these nutrients are very essential for having a healthy growth of plants.
- Citrus fruits are completely environmentally friendly and they will cause no harm to nature. Despite the time-taking procedure, it will break down eventually and will not leave anything behind.
- Citrus kills the pests that can cause harm to the growth of plants. All the pests and insects die because of the hard smell of citrus.
- There will be a better soil structure where you will compost citrus. It will promote water retention and boost the growth of beneficial microorganisms.
See Also: Buy Nothing Groups For Beginners
FAQs: Can You Compost Citrus?
Ques 1. Which Fruits Are Not Suitable For Decomposing?
Ans. You can compost all the fruits but you need to ensure that every fruit has different composting time. The process can vary depending on the fruits. All you have to do is be careful and patient throughout the entire process.
Ques 2. Can I Compost Grapefruits?
Ans. Yes, there is no problem in composting grapefruits but the quantity must be little or moderate each time. If there will be a large quantity then it can imbalance the compost pile and reduce the speed of procedure. Do cut them into small pieces and also keep it open before adding to compost. Apart from this, use brown materials to reduce the acidic level.
Ques 3. Are Onions Suitable For Composting?
Ans. If you are going to add onions in your compost pile, then keep it in a small quantity. Onions have a hard smell that might attract pests. However, if you bury the scarps of onions minimum 10 inches deeper, then you don’t need to worry much.
Ques 4. How Long Can A Citrus Fruit Take To Decompose Completely?
Ans. The time span in which citrus fruits can get decomposed completely ranges between some weeks to almost a year. This depends on the condition of the pile, temperature and all the other requirements. You can speed up the process by using various methods. If you manage the compost pile well, then this is no lengthy process.
Ques 5. Can I Compost Citrus Fruits In The Electric Composter?
Ans. Yes, you are free to put citrus peels in the electric composter but don’t keep the pieces so large. This will lead the peels to be stuck in the grinder as they have a fibrous texture. So, keep the pieces small and compost citrus peels in your electric composter.
According to the misconception, citrus cannot be composted due to its acidic nature. However, there are ways to balance the acidic nature then why not to compost citrus. You will need to be more patient for composting the citrus piles but it could easily be done with extra care. Hope that you have learnt most of the things related to citrus composting reading the points mentioned here to grow healthy and beautiful plants.