a rich, dark colored loamy soil to spread around plants as a mulch, or mix into the soil that will offer minerals and a healthy dose of food and encouragement the plants need.
There are different methods of keeping a compost pile. Mine is in a big plastic bin. Others use an open, fenced in enclosure, or make one out of old pallets. Some use several piles, at different stages of completion. As I keep one pile, adding to it every few days, I have to dig into the pile to get to the good stuff, and sometimes I need to screen out the in-process compost from the completed product.
It is really not complicated. You don't need fancy equipment or chemical additives or a compost starter. Compost will happen.
I loved reading this quote, from Diane Setterfield's The Thirteenth Tale. Her character, Vida Winter (an author), is speaking. Puts a thoughtful spin on compost.
"Life is compost.
You think that a strange thing to say, but it's true. All my life and all my experience, the events that have befallen me, the people I have known, all my memories, dreams, fantasies, everything I have ever read, all of that has been chucked onto the compost heap, where over time, it has rotted down to a dark, rich, organic mulch. The process of cellular breakdown makes it unrecognizable. Other people call it the imagination. I think of it as a compost heap. Every so often I take an idea, plant it in the compost, and wait. It feeds on that black stuff that used to be a life, takes its energy for its own. It germinates. Takes root. Produces shoots. And so on and so forth, until one fine day I have a story or a novel."