Question about diatomaceous earth in compost

catherinet(5 IN)August 11, 2014

I have chickens and always put their old bedding (wood chips and poo) into the compost. But recently I got to thinking.........I do add diatomaceous earth to the bedding to keep mites and lice down. Would this in the compost kill off any of the good organisms that help decompose the pile?

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
drew51 SE MI Z5b/6a

Since bacteria can reproduce itself over a million times in 24 hours, it is not of concern in any way.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2014 at 6:31AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
catherinet(5 IN)

Thanks Drew.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2014 at 2:59PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
daninthedirt(Cent TX; HZ10, Sunset z30, USDA z8a)

I think a better answer is that diatomaceous earth kills insects by acting as a knife in between the cartiliginous plates on their body. It slices them up. Bacteria are small enough that the DE grains can't wedge themselves into, let's say, the underarm of a bacterium. So DE is unlikely to kill them.

The rate of reproduction has little to do with it.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2014 at 1:35AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

There are bigger beasties involved in processing plant material into compost than just microorganisms. Yes, it will harm some of these. No, it doesn't effectively matter much.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2014 at 1:45AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
catherinet(5 IN)

Thanks grubby.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2014 at 7:51AM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Frost damaged lettuce transplants
Hi all, Transplanted some lettuce outside last week...
pepper plant problem
I've had Oedema on some of my plants for a couple weeks....
Ryan Shea
lining bottom of raised bed for tomatoes
I keep reading advise about lining the bottom of raised...
Sweet potato slips have white crystals on lower that bad?
I bought multiple sweet potatoes from the store to...
Problem Borettana Onion- Germination
Hi All, Anyone grown Borettana Onions from seeds before?...
Sponsored Products
Catalina 3 Drawer Dresser by Copeland Furniture
$1,911.00 | Lumens
Abetta Nylon Wide Flex Round Skirt Saddle with Aire Grip - 20501FWC5BK
$405.75 | Hayneedle
Midwest Products Multi Use Carrier - FT-51C
$29.95 | Hayneedle
AICO Furniture - Lavelle Melange Wood Trim Settee - 54864-SPRNG-34
Great Furniture Deal
Pearl Mantels Jefferson Wood Fireplace Mantel Surround - 126-50
$579.98 | Hayneedle
AICO Furniture - Lavelle Oval Back Wood Chair - 54834-TOPAZ-04
Great Furniture Deal
AICO Furniture - Essex Manor Curio - N76505-57
Great Furniture Deal
Modern Fan Company | Gusto Ceiling Fan
$384.00 | YLighting
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™