Square Foot Gardening Forum

Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.


Search
 
 

Display results as :
 


Rechercher Advanced Search

Latest topics
» To Screen or not to screen ???
by camprn Today at 3:24 pm

» SFG for shade?
by Marc Iverson Today at 2:59 pm

» Herbs and Vegetables for the Lazy Gardener
by Marc Iverson Today at 2:56 pm

» Compost: Bekeley 18 day [hot] method
by grownsunshine Today at 2:55 pm

» Pill bugs!
by jimmy cee Today at 2:55 pm

» Friday's Rookie Topic VIII: French Tarragon
by Marc Iverson Today at 1:17 pm

» Table top getting extra weeks of sun
by sanderson Today at 12:43 pm

» PNW: October 2014
by FamilyGardening Today at 10:58 am

» Oct in the Lower South
by Ha-v-v Today at 10:03 am

» MEL'S MIX CALCULATOR not working?
by freedoms1791 Yesterday at 11:17 pm

» New England October 2014
by NHGardener Yesterday at 10:16 pm

» Friday Rookie Topics 2012
by johnp Yesterday at 3:27 pm

» Friday Rookie Topics 2011
by camprn Yesterday at 1:43 pm

» How much Rabbit Poo on/in garlic bed?
by brainchasm Yesterday at 12:30 pm

» What are you eating from your garden today?
by floyd1440 Yesterday at 8:53 am

» Gardening in England
by walshevak Yesterday at 6:56 am

» Caprese is easy with home made cheese
by sanderson Yesterday at 4:10 am

» Hello from Northeastern IL.
by sanderson Yesterday at 2:11 am

» moved our beds
by southern gardener 10/19/2014, 9:58 pm

» Blight
by yolos 10/19/2014, 9:10 pm

» 2014 SFG in Brooks, GA
by Windmere 10/19/2014, 7:41 pm

» Mid-South: October 2014
by Windmere 10/19/2014, 7:37 pm

» Sept tomatoes
by floyd1440 10/19/2014, 6:16 pm

» Newbie composting questions
by yolos 10/19/2014, 6:05 pm

» South n East of Denver
by Marc Iverson 10/19/2014, 3:25 pm

» Newbie in Las Vegas, year 1!
by Marc Iverson 10/19/2014, 3:21 pm

» Hiya folks
by Marc Iverson 10/19/2014, 3:18 pm

» Daikon radishes?
by Marc Iverson 10/19/2014, 2:27 pm

» The Winter Journey and greenhouse plastic
by audrey.jeanne.roberts 10/19/2014, 12:42 pm

» Feel like a Lone Ranger in Upper South
by Judy McConnell 10/19/2014, 10:53 am

Google

Search SFG Forum

Homemade Compost Activator

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Homemade Compost Activator

Post  Cincinnati on 6/28/2011, 8:59 pm

When I purchased my compost tumbler, I received a box of activator. It sells for about $15/box and gives me about 4 wheelbarrows full per box. The last batch quit cooking and I had to add more to get it started again. I have been getting wonderful looking compost, but it is costing me almost as much if not more than bagged compost because of the cost of activator.

I read recently to dump a beer over the raw ingredients. I also read about bone meal or blood meal. I haven't tried any of these.

Is there a good homemade activator/accelerant to get the next batch cooking? Am I being too cheap?, AND the cost of activator worth it for faster compost?

Cincinnati

Posts: 181
Join date: 2011-06-26
Location: Alabama Gulf Coast

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Homemade Compost Activator

Post  boffer on 6/28/2011, 9:17 pm

Cincinnati wrote:...I read recently to dump a beer over the raw ingredients....Is there a good homemade activator/accelerant to get the next batch cooking? Am I being too cheap?, AND the cost of activator worth it for faster compost?

LOL I have gotten negative feedback from other forum members for consistently advocating this method, but it has decades of positive results: don't dump good beer on your compost pile, oh no, drink it first, and then pee on your compost pile. Have a kegger and invite your gentlemen guests to by-pass the powder room in favor of your compost pile.

Seriously. Human urine is a compost catalyst. So is green grass, blood meal, rabbit pellets, and alfalfa meal.

Sorry, I really can't speak to making compost quickly. Cut grass is 20% of my compost, but it's ready when it's ready.

____________________________

Last frost date (50%): April 15     First frost date (50%): Oct 15    
Zone: Irrelevant

boffer

Male Posts: 6406
Join date: 2010-02-26
Age: 61
Location: yelm, wa, usa

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Homemade Compost Activator

Post  busygirl on 6/28/2011, 9:46 pm


busygirl

Female Posts: 88
Join date: 2011-05-30
Location: Southeastern Ohio

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Homemade Compost Activator

Post  camprn on 6/28/2011, 9:48 pm

boffer wrote:
Cincinnati wrote:...I read recently to dump a beer over the raw ingredients....Is there a good homemade activator/accelerant to get the next batch cooking? Am I being too cheap?, AND the cost of activator worth it for faster compost?

LOL I have gotten negative feedback from other forum members for consistently advocating this method, but it has decades of positive results: don't dump good beer on your compost pile, oh no, drink it first, and then pee on your compost pile. Have a kegger and invite your gentlemen guests to by-pass the powder room in favor of your compost pile.

Seriously. Human urine is a compost catalyst. So is green grass, blood meal, rabbit pellets, and alfalfa meal.

Sorry, I really can't speak to making compost quickly. Cut grass is 20% of my compost, but it's ready when it's ready.
+1 also see this thread from last year Speeding up my compost

camprn

Forum Moderator Certified SFG Teacher

Female Posts: 12743
Join date: 2010-03-06
Age: 52
Location: Keene, NH, USA ~ Zone 5a

View user profile http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-week

Back to top Go down

Re: Homemade Compost Activator

Post  boffer on 6/28/2011, 9:56 pm

camprn wrote: also see this thread from last year Speeding up my compost

I had forgotten about that thread. Why do 'peeing on the compost' and 'seriously' always go together? ROFL

camprn wrote:Time to pee on the compost pile.

____________________________

Last frost date (50%): April 15     First frost date (50%): Oct 15    
Zone: Irrelevant

boffer

Male Posts: 6406
Join date: 2010-02-26
Age: 61
Location: yelm, wa, usa

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Homemade Compost Activator

Post  littlejo on 6/28/2011, 9:59 pm

I will agree that 'boffer' is correct with the urine. Enough said about that!

A good mix of green and brown items should get you a fairly quick compost in a tumbler, but if you are impatient, here is a recipe that I recently used. Mine got very hot, so ya might want to go easy with the ammonia!

1 cup ammonia, from the grocery store.
1/4 cup corn syrup
1/2 cup liquid soap
2 gal. water

mix all up, and add sparingly to the composter. It will heat up within a couple of hrs.
mine was some good looking compost, finished in 2 weeks. But, I've got it set aside, curing.
Jo

littlejo

Female Posts: 1414
Join date: 2011-05-04
Age: 60
Location: Cottageville SC 8b

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Homemade Compost Activator

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 6/28/2011, 11:53 pm

My 6 year old activated the compost today....lol. I looked out the window and ran out to ask him what he was doing. He told me he didn't want to come inside. So, two things genetically passed right down to him from me...

Laziness and multi-tasking.

BackyardBirdGardner

Male Posts: 2727
Join date: 2010-12-25
Age: 40
Location: St. Louis, MO

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Homemade Compost Activator

Post  Mamachibi on 6/29/2011, 8:51 am

Another compost activator is kombucha "mothers." If you happen to make homemade kombucha, you can take your used "shroom" and either just toss it into the pile or stick it in the blender with some water and mix it up. GREAT bacteria in that stuff!

Mamachibi

Posts: 300
Join date: 2011-06-17
Location: Zone 6b

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Homemade Compost Activator

Post  Glendale-gardener on 6/29/2011, 11:21 am

BackyardBirdGardner wrote:

Laziness and multi-tasking.

fantastic!

Glendale-gardener

Female Posts: 293
Join date: 2011-03-10
Age: 39
Location: Cincinnati Zone 6A

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Homemade Compost Activator

Post  pattipan on 6/29/2011, 11:44 am

These common plants are good natural compost activators...

Yarrow:



Comfrey:



Dandelions:



pattipan

pattipan

Female Posts: 807
Join date: 2010-03-04
Location: WV -- Zone 6a

View user profile http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/gallery/personal160.htm

Back to top Go down

Re: Homemade Compost Activator

Post  TN_GARDENER on 7/11/2011, 8:30 pm

I too am one of those weirdos that adds filtered beer to his compost pile. Give me some credit...I wait until after dark Very Happy

I've also heard that adding some existing compost will help (shovel full of dirt will probably also work).

TN_GARDENER

Posts: 228
Join date: 2011-06-16
Location: TN

View user profile

Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top


Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum