Improve Your Soil the Easy Way

You can improve your soil the easy way – and without the mess of a compost pile!

But, even without the compost pile, don’t throw those kitchen scraps away!

You’ve heard the adage garden to kitchen and back to garden? It makes sense to try to recycle kitchen waste into the compost bin.

But it takes so long for compost to break down and be ready for the garden! And some places don’t allow for composting.

What to do? Learn how to recycle the scraps directly into your garden! There’s no need to wait for the compost to get ready. You can help your garden plants thrive right away without the wait.

Now is your chance to use all of the food scraps that you would toss away instead. Improve your soil the easy way.

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You Can Feed Scraps To The Garden In Several Ways

Chop Them Up

  • You can chop the scraps up into small pieces.
  • Sprinkle among the plants and their roots.
  • Or bury them next to and around plants. Watch out for the roots!

Make Tea for Watering

  • You can make tea from the scraps.
  •  Use it for watering around the plants.
  • Water the ground, not the plant’s foliage.

Use a Bucket Feeder

  • You can make a fertilizer feeder with buckets.  
  • Drill holes in the bottom of buckets and place the scraps into the buckets
  • As the food decomposes, it will drip into the ground, feeding the plants.
  • How easy is that?

Trench Composting

  • Composting in a trench is an excellent way to use scraps. Your compost is underground, so there is no visible compost bin, little odor, and less waste.
  • To start, dig a trench about 12″ deep.
  • Drop about 4″-6″ of scraps into the trench and cover with the soil.
  • As the scraps decompose, the plants will feed from their root zone.
  • This post from The Spruce talks about how to do trench composting and its benefits.
  • But beware, this method is probably not suitable for a garden with a dog!

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Improve Your Soil With These Six Items

Use these six kitchen scrap items to improve your soil the easy way. Save them from the compost pile and use them today! No need to wait!

Banana peels

  • Provide potassium to help plants with strong stems and dark green leafy growth.
  • To use: chop the peels and let them dry.
  • Spread them around and leave them to rot at the base of your plants.
  • Make a tea by soaking the peels in water for a couple of days. Use it to water the plants.
  • Or combine the two methods listed above. Water the plants with the “tea,’ then bury the remaining peels at the base of the plants.
  • Be careful not to damage the roots!

Citrus peels

  • Butterflies and bumblebees love them as a treat and energy source.
  • Can be used as an effective pest deterrent. Cats and insects hate the volatile oils and will steer clear.
  • If you have unwanted cats, shred the peels and scatter them around where cats might be “visiting.”
  • For aphids, place peels near the infestation, and they’ll disperse within a day.

Coffee grounds

  • Will add acid to the soil. Fertilizer, organic matter, improve drainage, water retention, soil aeration.
  • You can add coffee grounds directly to the soil, around plants, and in container gardens.
  • Use coffee grounds to mulch around plants.
  • Feed the worms!
  • Steep the used grounds to make a “tea” to water the plants.
  • Pour unwanted coffee into the ground around your acid-loving plants.


  • Contain calcium, and also magnesium, potassium, iron, and phosphorus.
  • Plants need these nutrients for their cell walls and to promote growth.
  • Calcium can also help prevent blossom end rot in tomatoes and squash plants.
  • Allow the shells to dry for a few days in the sun. When dry, they crush very easily and will break down more quickly in the soil.
  • Steep the eggshells and use the “tea” to water your plants.
  • Crushed eggshells can be used to improve drainage in the soil.
  • You can also use crushed eggshells as a slug and snail deterrent. Scatter some around the roots of new plants to keep the pests away.

Onion, Garlic and Pepper Scraps

  • Save the ends of onions, garlic, and peppers.
  • Combine all and steep to make a potent pepper liquor.
  • Transfer the liquid to a spray bottle. Spray on plants which are prone to pests.
  • Also, sprinkle around the base of the plants to deter aphids and other garden parasites. This spray might even work to keep deer away.

Tea bags

  • Even tea bags can be recycled. Add them to the compost pile or use the tea bags directly in the garden.
  • Cut the tea bags open and scatter the loose leaves directly around the plants.
  • Rebrew the used tea bags and use the “tea” to water the plants.
  • We recommend that you try to use all of the kitchen scraps in the garden and compost.

Please, never use meat or cheese scraps in the garden! You might end up with a horrible smell, and attract flies and other critters to your yard. Then, you face the big problem of how to get rid of them.

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Ready? Give these ideas some consideration to improve your soil the easy way – without a compost pile.

You’ll be recycling kitchen scraps, and your garden will thank you for the nutrients!

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