Definition of compost in US English:

compost

noun

  • 1Decayed organic material used as a plant fertilizer.

    • ‘There is no fertilizer better than compost, and you can make it yourself for free!’
    • ‘Place in a conservatory or warm greenhouse and keep the compost moist.’
    • ‘For best performance amend the soil with organic matter such as compost before planting.’
    • ‘Garden compost is not really suitable for this purpose because it contains weed seeds.’
    • ‘Even a newbie to composting can make good quality compost.’
    • ‘Place in a well-lit spot and keep the compost lightly moist.’
    • ‘Making leaf mould is different to making general garden compost in that only the leaves are used.’
    • ‘Adding compost to heavy clay soil improves drainage by improving soil structure.’
    • ‘If it's bad, mix 1 cubic foot of compost into the backfill.’
    • ‘I recycle all my fruit and vegetable scraps to make compost for my garden.’
    • ‘They spread the compost before plowing in the spring.’
    • ‘Mulch with an organic material such as compost or alfalfa hay.’
    • ‘I watered the planting area for each one with several litres of water, then added some fresh compost.’
    • ‘Add a little compost to the soil and fork in lightly, mulch and water.’
    • ‘Mix plenty of compost into the soil, or grow the trees in raised beds.’
    • ‘Mulch in late winter with any organic material such as home-made compost, leaf mould or composted bark.’
    • ‘Even with Betty's method of making compost, some ingredients tend to smell.’
    • ‘My job was to add fresh compost to the rows to make them rich for planting.’
    • ‘Amend soil regularly with compost and apply organic mulches continually to enrich your soil.’
    • ‘I dug big planting holes, though, and mixed large amounts of compost into the backfill.’
    fertilizer, plant food, dressing, organic matter, vegetable waste, humus, peat
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 A mixture of decayed organic material with loam and/or other ingredients, used as a growing medium.
      • ‘With the gardening season now getting into full swing, the trust is urging people to only use peat-free composts in their gardens.’
      • ‘Similarly, it is always best to use new potting compost when sowing seeds or transplanting seedlings.’
      • ‘He starts by filling the pot or seed tray with a mixture of seed compost and perlite (which helps aeration and drainage).’
      • ‘Gardening is our fastest growing pastime and the demand for composts is greater than ever - still largely met by commercial peat extraction.’
      • ‘Stock up on compost, potting soil and fertilizers, or find and haul these materials from local sources to create your own.’
      • ‘In a nutshell, you plant the tubers sandwiched between layers of multipurpose potting compost.’
      • ‘Used only in a do-it-myself mixture of seed compost, a single bag of peat lasted nearly a decade.’
      • ‘Sow some of the seed in a pot with multi-purpose compost or in a row in the garden.’
      • ‘In the croft garden we always use peat-free composts and prefer those made from composted bark.’
      • ‘There are plenty of bacteria, fungi, and other critters in a shovelful of soil or finished compost to get things cooking.’
      • ‘Ingredients in commercial composts include various kinds of animal manures and lawn and garden wastes.’
      • ‘Five plants were grown in each 25 cm diameter pot, using commercial potting compost supplemented by liquid fertilizer.’
      • ‘Alternatively, chemically-treated composts are available, which are said to keep vine weevils at bay for 12 months, or proprietary insecticides which work for about six months.’
      fertilizer, plant food, dressing, organic matter, vegetable waste, humus, peat
      View synonyms

verb

[with object]
  • 1Make (vegetable matter or manure) into compost.

    ‘don't compost heavily infested plants’
    • ‘When crops are growing in the fields, the manure is composted and applied to the land later.’
    • ‘You could use horse manure, but make sure it is composted.’
    • ‘You can compost fruits, vegetables, tea bags and coffee grounds, as well as leaf and yard waste.’
    • ‘It is unlikely there will now be much left in our grey bin, given that my household already recycles many other waste items and composts green and kitchen waste.’
    • ‘The only environmentally acceptable way to improve the earth is to compost banana peels and recycle soy milk cartons.’
    • ‘They bent their shoulders and backs to compost hay, manure, and field stubble, and transplanted plants from the woods into their own yards.’
    • ‘As another continuing farm project, Mark uses worms to compost cow manure and coffee hulls.’
    • ‘During the composting season, check your bin regularly to assure optimum moisture and aeration are present in the material being composted.’
    • ‘It's best not to compost fruit and leaves unless you know your pile gets hot enough to kill the pests.’
    • ‘He filled the tanks with a mix of 3 parts composted organic matter and 1 part each soil, sand, and pumice.’
    • ‘All through the summer I've been collecting and composting the used coffee grounds from work.’
    • ‘As municipalities launch programs to collect and compost household food waste, interest in degradable plastics is on the rise.’
    • ‘They share a powerful shredder, and compost all healthy plant material.’
    • ‘If the industry was serious about conserving supplies it would invest in water saving devices or compost the manure but that might cut profits, so they don't.’
    • ‘One of the easiest ways for a household to reduce their level of waste is to start composting their rubbish.’
    • ‘This involved separating their waste into bins for glass, tins and paper, then composting suitable material.’
    • ‘Any manure, hay or other organic material must be composted fully before usage to make sure it contains no surviving and active seeds to add to your problems.’
    • ‘Most other plant residues can be composted, if you have a well-maintained compost pile which generates enough heat to kill disease pathogens.’
    • ‘At this time of year it's also important to regularly remove dead flowers and leaves from plants and then compost this material for later return of the nutrients to the beds.’
    • ‘Finally, the district will soon be getting a grant for vermi-composting, which uses worms to compost organic matter.’
    1. 1.1 Treat (soil) with compost.
      ‘we turned clay soil into almost workable soil by composting it’
      • ‘For those of you who suffer from an inordinate amount of clay in your soil, composting is the answer.’
      • ‘It climbs by means of tendrils and is best grown in a composted soil supported by a fence or trellis.’
      • ‘They like shade and composted soil and plenty of water.’
      • ‘When planting tulip or daffodil bulbs in a formal display it pays to make sure that the soil has been well composted and forked over beforehand.’
      • ‘He saw how well the tomatoes flourished in that dark composted soil.’
      add fertilizer to, enrich with fertilizer, feed, mulch, compost, manure, dung, dress, top-dress
      View synonyms

Origin

Late Middle English: from Old French composte, from Latin composita, compositum ‘something put together’, feminine and neuter past participle of componere.

Pronunciation

compost

/ˈkämˌpōst//ˈkɑmˌpoʊst/