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Urea?

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Urea?

Post  Weatherkid on 11/30/2011, 11:59 am

Hi, I haven't been on here in a while, but I had a question.

We have a huge pile of leaves behind the fence in the back that continues go grow year after year. Someone told me that Urea would decompose them very quickly. What exactly is urea, is it safe to use, and how would I apply it?

Thanks a lot,

Weatherkid
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Re: Urea?

Post  sherryeo on 11/30/2011, 12:14 pm

boffer, I think this one's for you!
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Re: Urea?

Post  janezee on 11/30/2011, 12:23 pm

Here's a video that will help out on that one:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omdl6LfrY2o&feature=related
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Re: Urea?

Post  boffer on 11/30/2011, 12:25 pm

@sherryeo wrote:boffer, I think this one's for you!
Yeah...well...I put on my grown up hat and got started, but I'm outta time. How about finishing this up for me?

@boffer wrote:Hi again! Before you do anything, move that pile of leaves over so that you can shovel up all that wonderful leaf mulch that you'll find on the bottom of your pile.

Urea is a chemical compound found in urine, and it can be artificially manufactured. Generally, it has a high nitrogen content, which when applied to compostable materials, will act as a catalyst to increase the rate of composition and therefore raise temperatures.

If you look for some recent posts about composting, you'll find a variety of materials high in nitrogen content that can be applied to compost piles that will act as a catalyst...
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Re: Urea?

Post  gwennifer on 11/30/2011, 12:52 pm

Short answer: Pee on your pile.

I would agree that if the pile has been growing year after year, you'll have a nice bit of compost on the bottom already done. Running over the leaves with your lawn mower to chop them up will help them break down faster too.
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Re: Urea?

Post  boffer on 11/30/2011, 2:18 pm

Let me ask another question. How can you make your pile of leaves compost faster?

1. This is most important: you need to keep the leaves moist. If they get dry, they quit breaking down.
2. The smaller the leaves and pieces, the faster they will decompose.
3. You can add stuff with nitrogen content to increase the rate of decomposition. But remember, the leaves have to be moist in order for decomposition to occur at all.
A few catalysts you could add: urea, blood meal, alfalfa, rabbit pellets, fresh green grass, and lots more.

Leaf compost is wonderful stuff to add to your MM. You're fortunate to have your own source, even if raking them up is a chore your parents make you do! A number of forum members go around their neighborhood and ask neighbors for their leaves.

It would be an interesting experiment if you divided your leaves into several piles, then, keep the moisture level the same in each pile, but pee on one pile, add grass to one pile, and don't do anything to one pile. See which one composts the fastest.
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Re: Urea?

Post  Weatherkid on 11/30/2011, 3:08 pm

Thanks guys for all your answers.. I well definitely look into doing some of your suggestions.
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Re: Urea?

Post  RoOsTeR on 11/30/2011, 3:19 pm

I would be curious to know how many here pee on their piles or add pee. I mean I add some when using manures, but how many specifically add urine?
Curious minds want to know.

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Re: Urea?

Post  boffer on 11/30/2011, 3:36 pm

Just occasionally. I have to walk past a lot of trees to reach my compost piles!
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Re: Urea?

Post  plantoid on 11/30/2011, 5:41 pm

I use it .

In the link I bunged up about composting the technical info given was to dilute the urine /uric acid at 20:1 it helps break down the plant cellulose structures.

I suppose it is to dilute things a wee bit if you collect all issues of it as it will be stronger in the morning than at bed time .

In days gone by here in England we had things called crew yards which were brick built winter shelter enclosures , housing about thirty cattle on deep straw with almost fortified walls .
The yards had a very deep sump usually outside to the left of the gate , each year around early spring the farm hands would draw off the juices and use it as a liquid feed on tomatoes ,cabbages etc after heavily diluting it .

Urine was also used to make saltpetre for use in the manufacture of gun powder ..In the Napolenic wars soil sodden with it over a few months was a much sought after commodity to boiled up , the salt residues to be made into gunpowder for the cannons used against the French .
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Re: Urea?

Post  RoOsTeR on 11/30/2011, 10:14 pm

Interesting bit of information. So do you ever actually add your own to your pile? Sounds like boffer tries but can't make it that far.
My boys would take g great pleasure in going out and wetting down the pile I am sure.

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Re: Urea?

Post  Kelejan on 11/30/2011, 11:52 pm

@Weatherkid wrote:Hi, I haven't been on here in a while, but I had a question.

We have a huge pile of leaves behind the fence in the back that continues go grow year after year. Someone told me that Urea would decompose them very quickly. What exactly is urea, is it safe to use, and how would I apply it?

Thanks a lot,

Weatherkid

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Re: Urea?

Post  plantoid on 12/1/2011, 8:49 am

[quote="nKedrOoStEr"]Interesting bit of information. So do you ever actually add your own to your pile? Sounds like boffer tries but can't make it that far.
My boys would take g great pleasure in going out and wetting down the pile I am sure.[/quote

Yes ....... extraction point is a bucket in the garage when ever I'm outside ...not in the glasshouse .
I dilute to make about half a bucketful of it on the way round the the heap as I pass the outside water tap then just tip it in and rinse the bucket out on the way back .
My lass thought I was becoming a dirty old man & a flasher till I explained things to her .
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Re: Urea?

Post  RoOsTeR on 12/1/2011, 9:24 am

plantoid, you crack me up! Too funny!

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Re: Urea?

Post  Weatherkid on 12/1/2011, 11:37 am

Do people actually pee on their compost piles? Sounds kinda gross to me....and the leaf pile is about 75yds from a big road...it's not happening here... Smile
If I use the deteriorated leaves for compost, wouldn't there be weed seed in it? We keep the leaf pile separate from the compost bin because of this.

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Re: Urea?

Post  RoOsTeR on 12/1/2011, 12:07 pm

Kid, that is what inquiring mind want to know lol.you can fill a bucket and pour on to be a little more discreet. But yeah I am curious of added benefits and if people who do notice advantages of doing said deed.

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Re: Urea?

Post  plantoid on 12/1/2011, 7:51 pm

@Weatherkid wrote:Do people actually pee on their compost piles? Sounds kinda gross to me....and the leaf pile is about 75yds from a big road...it's not happening here... Smile
If I use the deteriorated leaves for compost, wouldn't there be weed seed in it? We keep the leaf pile separate from the compost bin because of this.


Some do some don't it's all a matter of taste Wink
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Re: Urea?

Post  RoOsTeR on 12/1/2011, 7:59 pm

Some do some don't it's all a matter of taste



I give up!

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Re: Urea?

Post  plantoid on 12/4/2011, 4:27 pm

nKedrOoStEr wrote:Kid, that is what inquiring mind want to know lol.you can fill a bucket and pour on to be a little more discreet. But yeah I am curious of added benefits and if people who do notice advantages of doing said deed.

The diluted solution helps break up the cellulose cell in the vegetation , there are also many many trace elements in urine that benefit plant growth .

Adding it in diluted form on a regular basis also helps keep the pile moist so further bacterial action can take place , the bacterial action makes feed for fungi such as wild yeasts , which in turn also help break the pile down further , this produced additional nutrients and when they die off they also nourish the compost heap.

I've read that the ladies urine should not be used because it can contain high ostrogen levels if that form of birth control is being used .
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Re: Urea?

Post  sherryeo on 12/4/2011, 5:00 pm

plantoid said:

I've read that the ladies urine should not be used because it can contain high ostrogen levels if that form of birth control is being used .

Yea, you guys sure don't want no sissy veggies, eh? Ha ha.
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