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Finished Compost
CompostHow to Know When Compost is Finished
Compost is mature when:
  • The color is dark brown.
  • It is crumbly, loose, and humus-like.
  • It has an earthy smell.
  • It contains no readily recognizable feedstock.
  • The pile has shrunk to about one-third of its original volume.

Simple Tests for Finished Compost
  • Bag Test - If you seal compost in a plastic bag for several days, it should produce no foul odor
  • Germination Test - Plant a seed in the finished compost to see if it will germinate. This is a good test to use if the compost will be part of a potting mix.