Compost Manure: An Essential Component for Sustainable Agriculture. Composting is the process of breaking down organic matter into a nutrient-rich soil amendment that can be used to improve soil health and plant growth. Compost manure, in particular, is a type of compost that is made from animal manure and other organic materials. It is an essential component of sustainable agriculture as it helps to reduce waste and pollution while improving soil fertility and reducing the need for synthetic fertilizers. In this blog post, we will explore the benefits of compost manure and how it can be used to improve soil health and increase crop yields.
What is Compost Manure?
Compost manure is a type of compost that is made from animal manure and other organic materials such as leaves, grass clippings, and food waste. The manure is mixed with the other organic materials and allowed to decompose over time. The resulting compost is a nutrient-rich soil amendment that can be used to improve soil fertility and plant growth.
Compost manure can be made from a variety of animal manures including cow, horse, chicken, and pig manure. Each type of manure has a different nutrient profile and can be used to provide different benefits to soil health. For example, chicken manure is high in nitrogen, while cow manure is high in potassium and phosphorus.
Benefits of Compost Manure
There are many benefits to using compost manure in agriculture. Some of the most important benefits include:
- Improved Soil Health: Compost manure is rich in nutrients that are essential for plant growth such as nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. When added to soil, these nutrients help to improve soil fertility and increase the availability of nutrients to plants. Additionally, compost manure helps to improve soil structure by increasing soil porosity and water-holding capacity.
- Reduced Waste and Pollution: Composting manure is an environmentally friendly way to dispose of animal waste. When manure is not properly disposed of, it can contaminate water sources and contribute to air pollution. Composting manure helps to reduce waste and pollution by converting the manure into a useful soil amendment.
- Reduced Need for Synthetic Fertilizers: Compost manure is a natural fertilizer that can replace synthetic fertilizers. Synthetic fertilizers are often expensive and can contribute to water pollution when they are washed into rivers and streams. Using compost manure instead of synthetic fertilizers helps to reduce the number of chemicals that are applied to crops.
- Increased Crop Yields: Compost manure provides plants with essential nutrients that help to improve plant growth and increase crop yields. Additionally, the improved soil structure and water-holding capacity provided by compost manure help to reduce soil erosion and increase the availability of water to plants.
How to Make Compost Manure
Making compost manure is a relatively simple process that can be done on a small or large scale. The following are the basic steps for making compost manure:
- Collect Organic Materials: Collect organic materials such as animal manure, leaves, grass clippings, and food waste. It is important to avoid adding any materials that are toxic or contaminated with pesticides.
- Mix the Materials: Mix the organic materials together in a compost bin or pile. It is important to have a good balance of carbon-rich materials such as leaves and straw and nitrogen-rich materials such as animal manure.
- Add Water: Add water to the compost pile to help the organic materials decompose. It is important to keep the compost pile moist but not saturated.
- Turn the Compost: Turn the compost pile regularly to help the organic materials decompose evenly. This also helps to aerate the pile and prevent it from becoming compacted.
- Wait: Allow the compost pile to
Processes of making compost manure
Dig lour pits or peg out four areas.
2. Add kitchen wastes, yam peelings, orange skin and pulp, rotten fruits and anything that rots easily.
- Then, add grass cuttings. hedge trimmings, vegetable wastes and killed or the desired height is compressed.
- Repeat this process until the pit is filled or the desired height is reached if the heap method is used.
- Cover the top with soil to prevent the entering of flies.
- Insert a stick at one end or at the centre in case of the pit method. This is called a “tester”. It detects if decomposition is going on or not. The stick will be hot if there is decomposition after about 5 days or else, it will be cold.
- Turn materials or the content of pit A or heap A into B after two weeks. Refill pit or heap A. Repeat this step until pit or heap D is reached and the desired quantity is obtained.
- Cover the final products with suitable materials until it is ready for use. This will prevent the loss of important nutrients due to strong sun or rain water.
‘Starters’ are materials used to initiate the decomposition process of compost materials. Examples are animal wastes, old compost or materials that rot easily.
Chemicals such as sulphate of ammonia could be used to induce a decaying process in the absence of starters. Such chemicals are called ‘activators”.
Turning of compost in pit or stack.
Advantages of compost manure
- It provides sources of food to living organisms in the soil. like, are earthworms, termites and microbes.
2. It adds nutrients to the soil for increased crop yield,
3. It improves the physical condition of the soil structure and texture.
4. It helps to maintain equal amounts of acid and ha-. the soil.
5. It helps to conserve soil moisture and prevents erosion
6. It has a modifying effect on soil temperature
- It involves much labour in preparation.
- It is time involving and not economic for use in large farms.
- It could cause scorching if applied when not fully matured
- It may introduce disease-causing agents. This will happen if not may properly handled or allowed to mature before use.
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