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Compost questions

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Compost questions

Post  laufenberga on 3/21/2012, 5:09 pm

Hello all,

I've recently built a couple compost bunks and I'm trying to get my compost piles going strong. I have a couple questions. First, I've read that compost needs to be moist so I've been spraying it was a hose every day or so, but not very much and I'm wondering if this is a good idea. Also, my compost is made of grass clippings, goat manure, kitchen scraps, wood ash, and forest rubble(leaves and small twigs), are these good together or should I find something else to add and are there any tips for helping it out.



Thanks
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Re: Compost questions

Post  WolfHeart on 3/21/2012, 5:20 pm

try this link as an idea of compost materials.

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t7023-mel-s-mix-pyramid
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Compost mixture

Post  tomperrin on 3/21/2012, 5:29 pm

@laufenberga wrote:Hello all,

I've recently built a couple compost bunks and I'm trying to get my compost piles going strong. I have a couple questions. First, I've read that compost needs to be moist so I've been spraying it was a hose every day or so, but not very much and I'm wondering if this is a good idea. Also, my compost is made of grass clippings, goat manure, kitchen scraps, wood ash, and forest rubble(leaves and small twigs), are these good together or should I find something else to add and are there any tips for helping it out.



Thanks

I would leave the twigs out. They won't decompose at the same rate as the other stuff and will have to be sifted out. They are also a pain to fork or shovel when you are turning over your compost. So I would leave them out unless you can chip them.
Dry matter is not going to compost. Moisture is required. Not too much, not too little.

The wood ash is great. Make sure there is no painted wood, nails, or treated wood in the mix (treated wood should not be burned in any event.) The wood ash will add potash (potassium) to the mix, a desirable component.

Tom
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Re: Compost questions

Post  quiltbea on 3/21/2012, 5:30 pm

I toss a bucket of water over my pile after I've added fresh kitchen scraps topped with dry leaves. I let Mother Nature do the watering otherwise, unless we have a dry spell. Not common here in Maine.

The ratio of greens to browns is important in composting. I prefer 1 part green (kitchen scraps, garden weeds, manure, etc) to 20 parts, yes twenty parts, browns (dry leaves, shredded newspaper, an occasional bucket of soil, etc). That keeps down the odors that attract wildlife, dogs and cats in the neighborhood and it makes a great finished compost.

Turning your pile now and again to distribute its contents adds much-needed oxygen that makes the compost break down faster.

Good luck.
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