What to do about my compost?

Discussion in 'Organic Gardening' started by newgrow, Feb 25, 2010.

  1. newgrow

    newgrow Seedling

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    It is breaking down nicely but is very moist. Is this o.k. Also I am noticing a little smell not bad though and lots of flies. Is this normal? If not what could be some solutions? Thanks

    f.y.i. I have a 55 gal plastic barrel I turned into a tumbler and have lots of holes for air and I turn "tumble" it once a week. And I add my uncooked fruit and veggies to it every now and again.

    Thanks again

    Also once this is done can/how could I save it to start a new batch without using the one just made for following seasons? Would it still have to be tuned?
     
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  3. toni

    toni Mistress of Garden Junque Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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    Sounds like it has cooled off too much, it needs to be hotter to keep the smell and flies away. You might want to cover it up when it rains. Moist is good but if it never has a chance to dry out a bit because of daily or frequent rains that I know Florida can have, it will cool down and sour.

    Do you have source of 'brown' you can add? Dried leaves, wood chippings, grass clippings that have been allowed to dry a day or so, etc.
     
  4. newgrow

    newgrow Seedling

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    I do have a good source of brown. It also has a door on it so I can, when needed put in a shovel and scoop out. Should I open this door to allow it to dry a bit faster? It gets about 3 hours maybe less of morning sun then the house blocks the sun the rest of the day. Does it need to be moved or a way to heat it up?

    Thanks
     
  5. live2garden

    live2garden New Seed

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    Please tell more about composting, I was wondering if those compost tumblers really work, they are frightfully expensive to me.

    My idea of composting is to make a new pile of grass clippings from the lawn each year, and adding some clean, disease free peelings to it and let it set until it breaks down, it takes quite awhile to get compost that way!
     



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  6. daisybeans

    daisybeans Hardy Maple

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    I was going to suggest adding some brown and turning is very well to mix. You probably don't need to change the amount of air getting in if you add the brown.

    I've got a tumbler but I just started it in the Fall so the jury is still out as to whether it is faster, more efficient, etc. It smells good when I open it so I take that as a good sign.
     
  7. KK Ng

    KK Ng Hardy Maple

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    I just pile up my garden waste with veggie, fruit peelings, egg shells, paper towels and whatever that non animal waste from the kitchen into the compost heap. The weather here is very hot and sometimes very wet.

    During the hot weather I would water the compost heap every day to keep it moist and not drenched.

    When the weather is very wet, I do not water it but I would spread the compost out when the sun is out to dry it so that it is just moist. When it is dried enough and still moist, I'll gather them and make it into a heap again.

    When the weather is fine, I just leave it alone :)and turn it every now and then.

    If I need the compost in a hurry I would turn it every other day to get the oxygen in. Doing this I can make use of the compost within a month with fresh ingredients.

    When I have excess compost, I just store them in a plastic barrel, covered but not airtight and leave it in the sun. The compost stored in the barrels are moist.

    Have fun composting :-D !!!
     
  8. toni

    toni Mistress of Garden Junque Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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    Check out the Organic Gardening forum
    http://www.gardenstew.com/forum-41.html there are several topics about composting.
     
  9. daisybeans

    daisybeans Hardy Maple

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  10. newgrow

    newgrow Seedling

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    Well thanks all.

    I did my tumbler the cheap and easy way. Well easy as in making not turning. You have to man handle it to turn it on it's wheels and is getting a bit heavy now but I am a young buck so I look at it as a work out. Some may find it somewhat overworking yourself just to turn it, but again I went the cheap rout so you get what you pay for. I found a piece of plywood and the 55gallon barrel. All I bought were 4 non pivoting wheels,2 hinges,and 2 pin locks to make a locking door so not to pop open on me while turning.

    Good luck.
     
  11. toni

    toni Mistress of Garden Junque Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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  12. daisybeans

    daisybeans Hardy Maple

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    My tumbler composter was a gift (pretty nice gift, I will add). I'll be interested to see how it compares to my regular one. When the time comes, I'll give you a report.
     
  13. newgrow

    newgrow Seedling

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    Toni...Mine looks exactly like yours only mine is on the ground instead of at waist high. But I imagine it is still hard to turn?

    I do agree that we need to figure out an easier way to tumble the tumbler. Let us minds think here at the stew. :)
     

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