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Organic Compost: How Tea Lovers Can Turn Tea Leaves into Homemade Manure

What can you do with your tea leaves or tea bags instead of just throwing them into the garbage which will eventually end up in a landfill? You can make your homemade manure. Here's a simple guide on how to make tea leaves or tea bags compost.

Shruti Kandwal
Tea bags and leaves that have been steeped are a great source of organic matter for your compost pile.
Tea bags and leaves that have been steeped are a great source of organic matter for your compost pile.

Organic Manure: If you regularly enjoy a cup of tea, you may have wondered whether there was another use for the steeped tea leaves and tea bags besides throwing them away. Fortunately, there is: put them into your garden or compost pile.

One of the most environmentally friendly tea habits you can develop to promote the well-being and health of the natural world is composting your used tea leaves. An excellent "green" approach to getting rid of your used tea bags is to put them in your compost bin or garden, which also benefits the health of your plants.

Tea leaves make excellent organic fertilizer for gardens, compost bins, and soil amendments. It serves as a beneficial counterbalance to the "brown" or carbon-rich components in compost as a "green" or nitrogen-rich component. You can compost both the tea and the bag if you make your tea in a bag.

Why Tea Leaves Are Great for Composting?

Tea bags and leaves that have been steeped are a great source of organic matter for your compost pile. Natural sources of nutrients like potassium, phosphorus, and nitrogen, which are abundant in tea leaves, can help balance the carbon-rich elements in your compost heap.

Steeped tea bags can hasten decomposition and help keep moisture levels stable in your compost. Tea leaves that have been steeped may also help to increase oxygen levels, making the environment more appealing for earthworms.

No compost piles? By scattering loose tea leaves on the ground close to the bases of your plants or burying tea bags in the soil, you may also use steeped tea to improve the soil in your garden.

Can Tea Bags Be Composted?

Yes, you can include tea bags in your compost or garden, but there is a key requirement. Make sure your tea bags are made of biodegradable materials before putting them in the compost.

Approximately 20–30% of tea bags marketed now include polypropylene, which cannot be composted. Additionally, none of the components in your tea bags should be potentially hazardous to the environment.

It is advised to cut open the bag, empty the contents into the pile, and then throw the bag in the garbage if you are unsure whether your tea bags are compostable or not.

Vermicompost can be an option too!

Vermicompost (worm mulching) can be used in place of a compost pile if you don't have the necessary space. Here is a helpful description of the procedure. If you already have a worm compost arrangement, all you need to do is make a pocket in the mulch, put the tea leaves in it, and cover it with loose bedding.

How to Compost Steeped Tea Bags & Leaves?

  • Remove the loose tea leaves or compostable tea bag from the kettle or cup once your tea has steeped, and place them aside. You can put the steeped tea in your kitchen's compost bin or bucket that you use to store leftover food before composting.

  • Allow tea bags or leaves that have been steeped to cool completely.

  • Fill your outdoor compost pile with steeped tea leaves or compostable bags.

Composting with tea is a simple and effective approach for tea drinkers to boost the health of their plants and add to their compost bin since, with each cup, you will have more to put into the pile.

Just keep in mind that it doesn't matter how you do it. You're contributing as long as you prevent the tea from ending up in a landfill.

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