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composting question

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composting question

Post  GWN on 6/7/2013, 1:48 pm

I have recently done up a huge pile of weeds through the chipper and am trying to hot compost them and I know that 140 is the magic number with regards to killing seeds, WHAT temp does it take to kill plants?
I gather that this is variable, however i am thinking :scratch: it should not take as high a temp to kill plants
Quack grass can take root from a tiny piece of a root, and much of this is chipped up Quack grass.
My compost pile with bokashi under it is very easy to get up to 120 in just a few days, but harder to get to 140 and to stay there.
and I wonder if there might be a compromise

Last edited by camprn on 6/7/2013, 5:01 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : corrected title)

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Re: composting question

Post  camprn on 6/7/2013, 5:01 pm

With grass like that I don't typically put it in my compost pile as I know the roots are tenacious. I usually let it decay in a pile on on it's own.
Plantoid had a great suggestion in soaking the plants and roots in a bucket for a week or so, to allow the rotting process to take hold.

I'm sorry I don't have an answer to your question. Good luck.


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Re: composting question

Post  plantoid on 6/7/2013, 6:53 pm

Pernicious weeds like your quack grass , dock thistles and nettles pus a whole host of others seem to survive the composting even if temps in the middle of the heap reach 140 oF .
I suspect that this is because it is bits of weeds that have stayed cool on the outer edges of the heap .

The soaking them submerged in a lidded water tub stir every other day or so till the water is nigh on black & stinks to high heaven .

Is the only way I know of getting some useful by-product out of such weeds unless you dry & burn them for the potash .

Carefully pour the stinky liquid back into the compost heap where the bacteria will have a feast as it helps break the heap down or dig a hole and pour it in then cover to mask the " aroma " .
Any stringy or slightly unb rotted bits left over put them back in the bucket and start again.

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Re: composting question

Post  GWN on 6/7/2013, 7:03 pm

HMMM I am thinking perhaps I could have put them into the bokashi bucket.. They would be in aneurobic environment for 4 weeks....

Thanks CAMP... this pile is only for this reason, I have not mixed them with my other compost.
I thought perhaps I could also have made a fire under my grill and placed all the weeds on top of tin foil?

I have tried soaking them in water years ago, it was a recipe for stinging nettle tea that got left..... Embarassed and plantoid you are right about the smell peeuuuuuuw.

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Re: composting question

Post  sanderson on 6/7/2013, 8:24 pm

I put a small amount of lawn clippings in a black garbage bag 2 days ago to try to kill the seeds. It has been in the sun for 2 days and it stinks, but is still green. Any comments on whether it is safe to put in my new 3 foot diameter compost cage? Or does it need to be rotten black before it is safe? I only have 1/2" of veggie material in the cage so far. Thanks

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