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Burying My Vegetable Scraps


April 14, 2020

If I bury my vegetable scraps a few inches into the soil will that amend the red soil?


Answer by JZ: Your question will be received by a few master composter colleagues, so they may also respond. You did not give us your zip code, so I lack information on your location in order to respond to your question.

Gardeners have been doing what you are doing, burying organic material in the soil for centuries. Yes, this practice will help amend any desert soil as the organics will decompose in the soil to humus and help amend that spot.

Best if you keep moisture in that spot by adding water to the hole before you add (bury) scraps, then cover that spot with 4 “ of organic mulch, for example leaves.  Mulching the area will help keep moisture in the soil thereby improving the decomposition rate of scraps. Another soil amendment which is very useful for our high desert soils is compost.

You could add a cup of compost to the hole whenever you bury scraps. This will add useful decomposing microorganisms to the hole which will improve the rate of decomposition.

Hope that this is helpful.  Best.

From original questioner: Super helpful. I forgot to tell u I live in north valley very close to nature center. I’ve been her 3 years and now am trying to cultivate plants that seem to love this rich clay-sometimes sandy-wormy and rooty soil!!  Even if you had said no. I’d probably keep doing this cause it seems to work. My eldest son however thinks it’s crazy.  Thank you again for such a quick response.

Answer by JZ: Excellent.  Thanks!   Compost on.

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