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Out of all citrus fruits in the world, oranges and lemons are the most consumed because of their great nutritional value.
You will agree that most people throw away the peel or barks of orange and lemon fruits but did you know that these parts that are usually thrown away have several benefits.
Citrus fruits supply the soil. with minerals such as Phosphorus and potassium, break down easily and help get rid of pests with their strong scent.
The process of putting citrus on compost is straightforward and does not involve difficult steps.
In this article, we are going to discuss how we can put orange and lemon citrus in compost and their various benefits.
Can You Compost Citrus (Lemons and Oranges)?
People found it inappropriate to put Citrus in compost, this is because they feel that vermicomposting methods will kill the friendly and composting worms.
But this has been proven wrong, therefore it is very easy to compost citrus fruits, it can either be whole fruit or just the peels of fruits. Some citrus fruits that can be made into compost include:
How To Carry Out Composting On Citrus
There is no specific process by which citrus is being made into compost other than simply throwing the citrus or peels into waste. However, following the tips below will make it easy for the citrus to compost well.
- Make sure that the citrus and citrus peels are dry before composting, especially during cold periods.
- Mix the compost weekly to keep it hot and prevent mould from getting on it.
- Compost should be made up of 1 part green, 1 part water and 1 part brown. There should not be excess water, just enough to keep in a good condition and increase composting.
- Add only things that were once living to your compost. Inorganic material and objects should not be added to the compost.
The tips below will make sure that your orange or lemon peels turn into compost well.
Benefits Of Adding Orange And Lemon Peels To Your Compost
Lemon, orange and their peels from citrus fruits have the following advantages in the compost:
- They provide the compost with minerals such as potassium, phosphorus and nitrogen to make the compost have more nutrients.
- Pests such as rodents and insects should not be seen in the compost material.
- These minerals also fasten up the composting process. The tough citrus scent deters animals and insects from the compost heap
- They breakdown completely, thus not a risk to the environment
- Citrus fruits help the compost speed up the composition process.
- The same warmth is enough to kill off any seeds in the compost pile. This deters their sprouting once you put the compost in your garden.
If compost making is carried out properly, citrus composting will be very helpful for your compost heap and the garden when you finally use the compost material as manure.
How Can Lemon Be Turned Into Compost?
A few ways have been highlighted on how we can turn lemon into compost
- To ensure that your lemon peels compost properly, cut them into small pieces after you peel the fruit.
- Because citrus won’t decompose well in cooler weather, dry lemon peels on a rack in the sunlight before composting them in the cooler seasons.
- To neutralize the level of acidity of your compost bin, tone those lemon peels with a warm helping of fresh grass.
- Since citrus peels are capable of generating mould, it’s extra important to keep the compost pile warm by turning it every couple of weeks – a compost tumbler makes for a solid solution here.
Apart from the presence of worms, not only can you compost lemons but it can be done in the safest way possible, citrus peels in the garden lend themselves to a handful of other uses.
Humans love the tangy fragrance of lemons, but bugs and many harmful pests deter this fragrance.
Beyond the garden, fragrant lemon peels also can be used in baking.
Can Citrus Be Put In A Worm Bin?
There are some worms in vermicompost that find it difficult to cope with citrus. These worms can either resist the citrus completely or can be damaged by the acid in the citrus fruits.
When compost contains excess fruits or feels it introduces too much acid into the compost. This will in turn affect other organisms in the compost such as healthy bacteria.
Can Too Much Citrus Be Put In Your Compost?
Yes, there can be too much citrus, whether you’re vermicomposting, too much citrus in a compost pit isn’t healthy. In a normal state, citrus fruits are acidic in a mild way so that they can compost without affecting the rest of the pile.
Excess of fruits will cause the acidity of the compost to be quite high. This affects the composting process, especially the microbes that carry out the process.
If left acidic for a lengthy period, the acid can seriously influence the method to the extent that it stops.
Can Oranges Be Made Into Compost?
Oranges can be made into compost but this should not be done in large amounts. This is because too many citrus fruits can interfere with the balance of your compost and If the compost appears too acidic it might affect the bacteria that help break down the compost.
If you are planning on throwing away oranges, simply cut them in two to fasten the rate of compost formation.
How Do You Make Citrus Fruits Peel Compost?
Most fruit peels, not just citrus decompose, depending on where you put them, if they are kept in the ground they will turn into humus. If they are kept with other plants, they help remove bad smells and aid decomposition.
How Long Does Citrus Peels( lemon and orange)Take To Decompose?
According to researchers, it is estimated that citrus fruits like oranges for example take about six months to form compost. Some hard lettering orange peels or lemon peels can take longer periods or even indefinitely compose.
Are Mouldy Oranges Good For Compost?
To put it simply, Yes, they can. Mouldy food which consists of fruits and vegetables can be added to compost. When using worm bins, we need to be careful because they might make it difficult for the worm bins to survive.
In conclusion, we have seen that compost from citrus plants such as lemon and orange are great when done properly, they add nutrients to the plants or soil.