things to put into a compost pile ..?

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  #1  
Old 06-08-10, 10:51 AM
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things to put into a compost pile ..?

I've heard you can put things other than just your leftovers into your compost pile. Such as, newspaper...Is this true??

do you have experience with this?
what are other things that are compost friendly?

also, do I need to keep it covered so that animals don't eat my compost?

thanks
 
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  #2  
Old 06-09-10, 06:37 AM
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Hi frakingah

For composting

A C C E P T A B L E
Food Waste:
Baked goods
Bones
Cereal
Coffee grounds and filters
Dairy products
Eggs/eggshells
Flour and grains
Fruit
Grease and fat
Meat and fish (raw and cooked)
Nuts
Pasta and rice
Sauces
Tea bags and loose tea
Vegetables

Paper Products:
Cotton balls
Facial tissues
Greasy pizza boxes
Microwave popcorn bags
Paper towels, napkins and plates
Shredded paper (loose)

Other items: Hair
House plants (soil removed)
Pet fur
Sawdust
Wood chips/shavings

N O T
A C C E P T A B L E

Aluminum foil
Bandages
Chip bags or compostable chip bags
Cigarette butts or ashes
Clothing/textiles
Dead animals
Diapers
Disposable mop sheets
Dryer lint
Feminine hygiene products
Fireplace ashes
Frozen juice containers
Glass
Incontinence products
Kitty litter
Metal
Oils or lubricants
Pet waste
Plastic bags, containers and food wrap
Polystyrene foam packaging
Rubber products
Takeout cups
Twist ties
Vacuum bags
Wax cartons or wax paper
 
  #3  
Old 06-09-10, 08:11 AM
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Just a note....most sites, such as the USDA, Mother Earth, etc, recommend NOT putting, meat, bones, fat or grease into compost piles. Although they will eventually decompose, it can take a long time for most bones. The meat, fat, and grease can also attract rodents, raccoons, possums and other pests as well as possibly repelling worms.

Of course they can be used, but as a rule you need to reduce them to small sizes which may be more of a chore than some people want to do.
 
  #4  
Old 06-09-10, 10:04 AM
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This is not 100% accurate. The processing time for all of the items I mentioned is 2 weeks. Of course, some items take more time than other items, however, 2 weeks cover all.
As for the animals, ANY food smell will attract them , even an egg shell
 
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Old 06-09-10, 10:47 AM
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Patricia...could you provide a link or ref about the 2 wks thing? I haven't seen anything that says that...

Thanks!
 
  #6  
Old 06-09-10, 11:01 AM
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Let me explain exactly what I meant and the times

In our region, we have several recycling programs: the organic waste with composting production is the most successful.
We have special bins for collection, and the list I provided is the list I use.
According with the reports we receieve with the taxes, the organic waste is processed in composting facities during 15 days (as I stated) and cured for 30 days. The same facitily sells the compost
 
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Old 06-09-10, 11:45 AM
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Ahhhhhh OK.....that does clear things up!

I DID see references to meat, bones, fats, etc when they were talking about commercial/municipal composting...even a link for meat packing plants..(yuck..bet thats a wonderful sight/smell). But I was looking at residential/individual resources.

Thanks again for the clarification...
 
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Old 06-09-10, 12:56 PM
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If you have access to manure, mix it in to help speed the process. Also I've seen big composting facilities cover the pile with manure to help keep pest away.
 
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Old 06-09-10, 01:06 PM
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GG,

the processing time i.e. conversion time is a chemical process therefore commercial or residential take the same time
 
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Old 06-09-10, 08:25 PM
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The manure speeds things up because of the extra heat, (Heat speeds chemical processes), during the winter I can see the heat rising from my compost pile. Before I started adding manure to the compost pile the pile used to freeze.
 
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Old 07-20-10, 02:41 PM
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Worms in compost

I've heard it's a good idea to include worms in your compost. Is this true? Where is a good place to get worms?
 
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Old 07-20-10, 03:35 PM
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I'd go with adding manure over adding worms. It does make sense that manure will liven up the process. Are you sure your not thinking of adding worm castings to compost, or adding worms to garden soil? Either way, if you want worms, a bait shop would have them.
 
  #13  
Old 08-01-10, 08:02 AM
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Smile Always cover your food scraps!

I have been composting for 50 yrs and most failed piles are too dry,food waste not covered which attract bugs and smells, or do not have a green/brown mix. If you layer b/g and keep damp, it will heat up and you do not have to turn. All leaves and all grass clippings are bad, but mix them and they will get HOT and decompose quickly. Have fun, reduce waste and get free fertilizer. I have successfully put in grease,small bones,paper (wet) jeans,etc with no smells IF you remember to cover with 4" of weeds,leaves,grass,etc.
 
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Old 08-05-10, 06:43 PM
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Worms are good for compost. They should entire it from underneath the pile.
 
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Old 08-18-10, 08:03 PM
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Where is the ideal place to keep your compost? Outside? Is it necessary to put it in a box or can I just pile it in my backyard?
 
  #16  
Old 08-24-10, 04:59 AM
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Originally Posted by talebit View Post
Where is the ideal place to keep your compost? Outside? Is it necessary to put it in a box or can I just pile it in my backyard?
I'd place it in the backyard in a container and make sure it's properly covered. Don't just pile it willy-nilly. If your garden's got the space, you could also dig a pit several feet deep. Always, always cover it properly.
 
  #17  
Old 09-05-10, 08:32 PM
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coffee grounds

I'd recommend lots of coffee grounds (sometimes starbucks and other coffee vendors will give you large bags of used grounds). They compost well and absorb a lot of the smell.
 
  #18  
Old 09-07-10, 05:49 AM
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Originally Posted by crafty39 View Post
I've heard it's a good idea to include worms in your compost. Is this true? Where is a good place to get worms?
You can build your own. Use rubber storage totes, galvanized tubs, wood, or plastic.

Material: Rubber is cheap, easy to use and durable. Galvanized tubs are somewhat costly but will last forever. Wood will eventually be eaten, and plastic cracks easily, but either will do in a pinch. Some people prefer wooden compost worm bins because they may breathe better and absorb excess moisture[1], which can be hazardous to the worms. Just don't use chemically-treated wood, which may be dangerous to worms or leach harmful chemicals into your compost. 5-gallon plastic buckets now for sale by most hardware stores can be used - especially if you live in an apartment. Clean the big 5-gallon soap buckets thoroughly and let them sit for a day or so filled with clean water before using as a worm bin.

Ventilation: Your bin should be well-ventilated, with several 1/8 inch (3mm) holes 4 inches (100mm) from the bottom (otherwise the worms will stay at the bottom of the bin and you may drown your worms). For example, you can build a worm bin out of a large plastic tub with several dozen small holes drilled out on the bottom and sides. Untreated wooden bins are naturally ventilated because of structure of wood.

Here's to you, your health and the health of your family.
 

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  #19  
Old 09-08-10, 05:52 AM
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The processes involved in commercial vs. residential composting are significantly different. Commercial processors require environmental permits to protect against site contamination and tightly regulated to address possible public health concerns. Given expensive equipment and tightly controlled processes used by commercial producers, be thoughtful about applying info pulled from a commercial producer if describing what it does in itís commercial operation as that may not be suitable for a small scale composter not having that equipment.

Small scale composting is usually not regulated because itís assumed not to be distributed or sold to the public, and the burden falls on small scale operators to educate themselves. I would be less attentive to details if the compost is for general landscape use and more attentive if used for a vegetable garden where the produce will be consumed by humans.

Compost Overview

TMECC - US Composting Council

Backyard Composting

http://cwmi.css.cornell.edu/smallscaleguidance.pdf

Composting Fact Sheets - Cornell Waste Management Institute

Manure Composting Manual
 
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