How To Store Compost Properly? Get Your Job Done With 9 Tips

Composting is the reprocessing of organic compounds, and it comprises microbes that need moisture, nutrients, and aeration to proliferate. Compost decreases nutrients and volume gradually, without a doubt, but poorly managed composting destroys them much faster. Therefore, storing compost correctly keeps it safe from the elements and prevents it from rotting until you reuse it. How to store compost properly?

There are many helpful and practical tips to keep it, including:

  • Use containers
  • Use plastic bags
  • Cover it properly
  • Place the lid above the compost pile
  • Construct a sturdy shelter
  • Increase the size of the pile
  • Additions should be chosen carefully
  • Shred compost before storing
  • Keep a close eye on the time

If you are curious about these methods, let’s scroll down to learn in detail!

Does Compost Go Bad?

The short answer is compost waste, including homemade fertilizer, won’t go bad if you know storing compost correctly.

After a specific time of storage, it may break down. Don’t worry, as that is perfectly normal. It has no bearing on the quality.

Compost nourishes plants in this manner! That’s also why we have to keep replenishing the potting soil with fertilizer on a regular basis.

After preserving organic compost for an extended period, it may appear to have lost volume.

Annually, it accomplishes only a tiny amount. Don’t worry about the fertilizers going bad; they’ll never harm your vegetables.

More to read: Can Potting Soil Get Worse?

If stored properly, it never goes bad - How To Store Compost Properly

If stored properly, it never goes bad

Why Should You Store Compost?

Composting kitchen waste and garden leftovers is an environmentally beneficial way to get rid of them.

Every horticulturist who prepares and uses fertilizer deserves a round of applause as storing compost brings many benefits.

Friendly Environment

It’s always a good idea to compost. Do you know that, on average, each individual who practices this helpful habit saves 277 pounds of garbage annually?

Summer is the ideal season for composting. High-temperature conditions aid in the microbial degradation of spent ingredients. This ensures that your heap is good to use by the fall.

However, if the sowing season is prolonged until midwinter, you may try to preserve your pile.

That’s how you keep it ready and prevent it from turning into a concrete pile that won’t break down whenever you need to use it.

It helps save the environment - How To Store Compost Properly

It helps save the environment

Making Room For Things

Gathering the old fertilizer may free up room for a fresh heap when you do not own a garden, or your garden is restricted.

Combining components from the upper edge with materials that haven’t broken yet in the middle of the pile is not a good idea. Simply detach this section and blend this with the additional elements to create a new heap.


In the fall, you’ll find that the fertilizer has become slightly compressed. As a result, shifting the heap while carrying it to the compost storage location will provide clean air and aid in aeration.

Remember that larger, moist blocks will gradually separate after chilling and freezing during the winter.

Large blocks will separate after freezing in the winter - How To Store Compost Properly

Large blocks will separate after freezing in the winter.


If properly stored, the compost pile will be safe from severe weather, such as heavy snow and rain. Microorganisms from the substance will remain active if kept in a cool, protected environment.

They’ll continue to affect the materials a while, improving the compost’s quality.

Furthermore, the extra drying period when the fertilizer is kept will improve the circumstances for microbiological activities. They’ll also make high-quality compost from almost-finished waste.

How To Store Compost Properly?

If you have leftover fertilizer and are looking for storing compost ways, let’s take a closer look at the following practical and valuable methods. Even beginner gardens will surely succeed on the first try!

Use Containers

A primary plastic rubbish bucket with holes for ventilation might be a great way to store any leftover compost. It’s better to utilize smaller ones to handle fertilizer easier.

A simple approach to raise the heat inside the container is to color it black. This is a sensible solution if your compost bin has a securely fastened lid. It will make it easy for you to turn the content and aerate it.

Furthermore, because the fertilizer within the container begins to freeze, it expands, making a plastic container or plastic bag an ideal alternative for this objective.

If you want to save some good finished compost for growing medium, store your bins in the basements to keep them from freezing.

Use a container to store it - How To Store Compost Properly

Use a container to store it.

Use Plastic Bags

Collect a variety of durable, reusable bags and poke holes in them. With this method, you’ll be able to turn unsightly, harmful bags into helpful compost containers.

You’ll create an appropriate container for keeping fertilizer to fertilize your crops in the spring.

Cotton shopping bags are also constantly available. Make sure their bottoms are damp, so you’ll want to keep them somewhere other than a wood surface to prevent them from spoiling.

Additionally, check the moisture level in the fertilizer heap weekly to ensure it isn’t becoming too wet or too dry.

Cover The Compost Pile Correctly

A simple tarp can sometimes be an effective solution to a problem. Simply drape it on your heap to keep it dry and provide sufficient internal temperature for the biochemical processes to take place.

There are two advantages to burying fertilizer. You’ll ensure that the fertilizer is adequately humidified while preventing humidity levels in a heap.

On the other hand, worms can enter the pile and assist in decomposition. The disadvantage of this option is that it may make your garden look unsightly and take up too much area.

Cover it correctly - How To Store Compost Properly

Cover it correctly

Place A Lid On The Compost Pile

Excess water from severe snowfall or rain can seep into the materials, causing problems for your heap.

Placing a solid lid or makeshift cover on your heap is among the quickest options. You’ll be able to protect it from heavy rains this way.

Construct A Sturdy Shelter For The Compost Pile

Making a solid shelter to store fertilizer is perhaps an effective way to defend it from frost and snowfall.

If you already have enough space and the capacity to create it, it may be your woodshed or garage. If that isn’t possible, a simple, sturdy cover will suffice.

If you are unsure how to build a pile or compost pile, you can watch this video:

Increase The Size Of Your Pile

As previously stated, even during the harshest winter season, the action of microorganisms at the heap will produce heat inside its core.

However, because they are open to unfavorable conditions, the pile’s borders will grow chilly and dormant. Compost may stay active longer in winter if you make a giant pile.

According to some professionals, you should construct a heap of at least 0.75 m³ to ensure that most of the materials inside have a high nutritional value.

Make it bigger - How To Store Compost Properly

Make it bigger

Additions Should Be Chosen With Care.

It doesn’t matter whatever you mix in your heap during the summer. Nevertheless, extra additives will be different if applied during the cold because the degradation process is slower.

Furthermore, some of them may attract unwanted rats and maybe even wild animals to your pile searching for food.

In this instance, a high-quality container would be an excellent investment.

Before Adding The Ingredients To The Pile, Shred Them

Take some extra time shredding the materials before dumping them in the container.

As a result, it will warm consistently, protecting the employed materials from the cold outside.

Shed it before building a heap - How To Store Compost Properly

Shed it before building a heap

Keep A Close Eye On The Time

The efficient solution is using the fertilizer as early as possible, as holding it for an extended period usually leads to the loss of vital nutrients.

Once you opt to preserve fertilizer for the next season, make sure to use it according to the instructions. Each delay decreases the nutrient value of the fertilizer.

How Long Can You Store Compost?

The majority of compost does not have a fixed expiration date. How long does compost last? Typically, it may last around one year before reducing in volume.

Fertilizer comprises a variety of organic substances that have been transformed through a complex chemical process.

If it smells stale, it’s usually a warning that something goes amiss, such as anaerobic decomposition, or that it requires additional time and turning.

If compost is not properly cared for, it can quickly deteriorate. Insufficient moisture or water trapped deep in a heap might lead to decay, rendering it useless for use in the soil.

That’s why it’s crucial to turn the fertilizer on a regular basis during the year.

You can continue to add leaf litter and organic cooking garbage to the heap, but remember to rotate once a week.

Organic material that hasn’t been turned and isn’t exposed to air might deteriorate inside.

Rotting compost smells! Since there are no longer any living organisms in the materials, they will not decompose.

To gain the most out of the nutrients, try to store them properly, turn them often, and figure out a method to remove any extra moisture.

Fertilizers of excellent quality will take your garden to greater levels. Therefore, it’s well worth the time and effort to care for this black gold!

The storage time for the compost - How To Store Compost Properly

The storage time for the compost

In A Nutshell

After reading this article, you will surely know how to store compost properly! These methods are straightforward to apply to expand your fertilizer’s lifespan and quality.

It’s important to remember that the principal purpose of storage is preventing it from excess water and moisture. To receive the maximum compost nutrients, keep it carefully and turn it in periodically.

Besides, it’s best to choose the appropriate composting storage method for your location and carefully store finished compost, and fresh compost. Hopefully, this article will be helpful for your gardening!

Thank you for reading!

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