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Top 5 Books on Composting for Beginners

Are you looking for the Top 5 Books on Composting so you can start building your own compost pile? 

There’s a lot of books on composting out there. Composting is the best way to take your kitchen and yard waste and turn it into your very own soil amendment. It’s always nice to have a place for your waste to go AND to be able to transform it into something that you can use to build up your soil health. 

In this post, I will:

– Introduce the Top 5 Books on Composting  

– Describe what you’ll learn in each great book

– Share links to these good books so you can go grab them and start learning

If you’re a home gardener, you’re definitely going to want to explore the benefits of composting. I’m sharing detailed information about the best composting books so that you can figure out YOUR best way to start composting. But why bother? 

Let’s dive into some reasons why you should even worry about learning to compost. 

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Why Bother Composting?

Composting seems like a lot of work. Why can’t I just throw my garbage away and forget about it?

Well, you could. But when it comes to certain waste products, there’s a better way. I’m talking about kitchen waste like egg shells, coffee grounds and food scraps such as fruit and vegetable peels. Yard waste such as old dry leaves and livestock manure. These examples are just a few of the best items you can add into compost heaps to create a very usable fertile soil. 

So, one of the reasons I started was because I needed a place for waste to go.

Here is my compost story. 

As our family grew, our trash cans were piling up. We don’t have a trash service that comes to the farm. Therefore, we have to manually deliver our trash to our county landfill waste center. But sometimes we get busy here and it just seems like a chore. Also, we had a lot of vegetable gardens and thick clay soil so growing root crops have been a struggle. 

​We started composting and spreading our own organic materials onto our gardens. And over time, our soil started to become more black and fluffy. Root vegetables began to grow bigger and better after a few years of adding in our own compost. So, I stand behind composting as a solution to several common issues that gardeners face. But how do you start composting?

I have done a ton of research into the world of composting over the years. Lots of hours in finding the right information and books. I wanted to have the most amazing techniques that would work for our area and climate. I’ve found the composting process to be fun and rewarding. Today, I’m going to share some great books as well as some additional resources for you to get started and reap the rewards of the compost system. 

The Top 5 Books on Composting

There are several excellent books about composting. These books cover a range of topics from the basics of composting to more advanced techniques. Here are some of the best books on composting that give practical advice for starting and managing your compost bin:

  1. “The Rodale Book of Composting” by Deborah L. Martin and Grace Gershuny 
  2. “Let It Rot!: The Gardener’s Guide to Composting” by Stu Campbell 
  3. “Worms Eat My Garbage” by Mary Appelhof 
  4. “Compost City: Practical Composting Know-How for Small-Space Living” by Rebecca Louie 
  5. “The Complete Compost Gardening Guide” by Barbara Pleasant and Deborah L. Martin 

Let’s dive into the contents of each book one by one. 

The Rodale Book of Composting

This comprehensive revised complete guide covers all aspects of composting, including different methods, materials, common problems and troubleshooting tips. 

I’ve learned over the years that composting is a process that takes time and patience. This book is also an essential guide to composting for beginner composters, gardeners and just people who want to be more environmentally conscious. 

The Rodale Book of Composting offers easy-to-follow instructions for making and using compost. It includes helpful tips for apartment dwellers, suburbanites, farmers, and community leaders; and ecologically sound solutions to growing waste-disposal problems.

Let it Rot!: The Gardener’s Guide to Composting

This book is a beginner-friendly guide that covers the basics of composting and how to get started. It helps you understand what household garbage is the best to use in your nutrient-filled compost that will improve soil fertility. 

You’ll soon be saving money, minimizing waste, and enjoying bountiful harvests.

Worms Eat My Garbage

This comprehensive guide focuses on vermicomposting or composting with worms. It also provides detailed instructions on how to set up and maintain a worm bin. Not only that, but it explains the latest techniques for keeping worm bins indoors for those composters with small spaces. A worm composting system is possible for you wherever you live!

Compost City: Practical Composting Know-How for Small-Space Living

A great resource for urban dwellers or those with limited space. This book offers practical tips for composting in small spaces. I love this book because it really proves that anyone can start up a compost from anywhere and any space. The ultimate guide to individual- and community-scale composting in small urban spaces—with illustrations, expert tips, fun DIY projects, and much more

You may think you need a big yard to compost. Think again. Compost City teaches you how to easily choose and care for a compost system that fits perfectly into your (tiny) space, (busy) schedule, and (multifaceted) lifestyle.

Whether you live in a cramped apartment or a sprawling town house, or you dream of composting in a shared space with a group of friends or colleagues, Compost City provides simple and effective indoor and outdoor composting options. Packed with research, expert testimonies, and a healthy dose of humor, this guide will help you:

1. Compost your food scraps and yard waste with ease
2. Ease your fears of backbreaking labor, obnoxious odors, big messes, and creepy crawlies
3. Convince compost-wary family, friends, neighbors, and community leaders to green-light your compost dreams

So, whether you compost one tea bag or barrelfuls of scraps at a time, you’re about to have a whole lot of fun.

The Complete Compost Gardening Guide

Finally, this book covers a range of composting methods, including traditional composting, vermicomposting, and composting with fungi.

Develop mature compost right in your garden. With your plants and compost living together from the beginning, your garden will become a nourishing and organic environment that encourages growth and sustainability. You’ll also find that the enriched soil requires less tending, weeding, and mulching, so you can do less back-breaking work for the same lush, beautiful results. 

Obviously, there’s so much information out in the world about how to compost. I hope that these suggestions break it down for you so you can have an easier and more rewarding experience of starting and maintaining your fresh compost. 

Garbage to Gold

These top 5 books on composting offer valuable information and insights into the world of backyard composting. This collection of books can help you become a more successful and knowledgeable composter.

Additionally, I also have a self-paced course that includes valuable information based upon my own experience with composting and what I’ve learned over the last 15 years. It can be a valuable resource for you to add to your toolbox and I know it can help you get results with your compost journey. The ultimate goals of composting are improving YOUR environment by having a place for your waste to go AND improving your garden by bettering the soil. 

And I will prove it to you that composting does work. Even after several years of adding in compost to our soil, we are continuing to improve our root crops and impress our loyal vegetable customers. And I know your garden goals can be met as well just by saving some of your waste products and making a compost. 

~ Happy Composting!