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There are some common herbs that help break down compost. They work either through providing a nutritional boost for the critters that do the work of breaking down the organic matter or by providing trace elements that increase the chemical reactions that occur during composting.
After reading this page, you might see a correlation between herbs that are great for our health and those that can really kick off your composting. It’s because all we all need pretty much the same basic nutrients whether plant, human or bacteria.
**Borage – Calcium, Potassium, Phosphorus, Iron and Zinc
Bracken – accumulates Potassium, particularly during the leafy green growing stage.
Capeweed – accumulates minerals to toxic levels
Chamomile – Calcium and Sulfur
Chickweed – Calcium, Copper, Silicon and Sodium
Cleavers = Calcium, Copper, Silicon and Sodium
**Comfrey – accumulates Calcium, Potassium, Phosphorus, Iron and Zinc. It also has an almost perfect Carbon/Nitrogen ratio.
**Dandelions – Calcium, Iron and Potassium, Phosphorus, Copper Magnesium.
Fennel – potassium copper
Lovage – Potassium and Nitrogen
**Nettles – high levels of Iron and a lot of Nitrogen
Seaweeds (including kelp) – accumulate trace elements, including, of course, Iodine.
Tansy – lots of Potassium
**Yarrow – Copper, Potassium and Phosphates
** indicates the the herbs we grow extra of just for adding to our various composts.
All you need to do is to chop up some material from the selected plants and place them in your compost, whichever composting technique you use – it will help them all.
You can make an activated compost tea from them or a more specialized Nettle or Compost tea from the press design composter that we favour.