My stages of composting

LloydJanuary 11, 2008
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loveofmylife680(z7)

Great pics
Jill

    Bookmark   January 14, 2008 at 6:24PM
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sandra_christie

pto3,
Wow Yes! thanks. Couple of questions for you though.
Your freshly mixed batch doesn't seem to have any greens that I can see, what did you use? Maybe they are underneath?

Did you screen your final product, it's beautiful?

How long did this all take, and what was your average temp whilst cooking?
Sorry to pester you, but THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT I WANT, so.....

    Bookmark   January 15, 2008 at 4:53PM
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dorisl(5)

I can see some grass clippings peeking out in there.

:)

    Bookmark   January 15, 2008 at 10:39PM
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sandra_christie

Lloyd, I bow before your expertise!
In zone 3, I'm guessing that you only get these fast results during the summer?
Also, do you think you would get compost so fast if you didn't use the tumpler systems?
Finally, then I'll leave you alone for a bit, how do you get the amounts necessary to fill a tumbler all at once to get things cooking.
Thanks,
Sandra

    Bookmark   January 16, 2008 at 4:12PM
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Lloyd

Good Morning Sandra

Expertise...snort...hardly. All I learnt is to mix, water and aerate. Time and the critters do the rest. I have no where near the knowledge level of some of the other contributors. I just like to compost stuff.

Compost season generally runs from mid April to the end of October. Fast composting is a product of a few variables; shredding the browns, absolutely a big thing in speedy decomposition; thorough mixing of the C and N; monitoring moisture and adding as necessary, I find with high temperatures moisture loss can be a factor. But my goal isn't fast compost because I let it cure a long time, my goal is fast tunraround in the tumbler. I had thought I could get the same 14-20 day cycle in the multi-tumblers, I was wrong. I think because I do not shred the material going into the multi's it takes longer before the temperature gets high and longer for it to come down. Could be other variables as well, who knows. In any event it takes longer. A person could do the same with a bin but it would be a LOT of work, with the multi tumblers, I just plug the motor into the outlet and watch them tumble.

As far as getting raw materials. I have a contract with the town to get all their yard waste material. I get at least four truckloads a week during the summer and a lot more during spring clean up and fall leaf season. When selecting greens I look for the fresh stuff that is finely chopped, it mixes very well with the browns. I have noticed that spring grass is the best and I am assuming that this is a result of spring fertilizing. Just a guess on my part. I try to use leaves that have been picked up with a mower as they are partially shredded. I try to store these so that I have a source of browns all season.

I like composting and I like to design and build stuff out of scrap so during the winter we design/build and then try them out in the summer. Not every project/idea worked but we had fun trying them. As I said elsewhere, it's like therapy and it's not really anything more than a really large scale hobby. I get lots of people coming to look at my contraptions but for the most part they are not feasible in an urban setting. I give tons of the compost away especially to local garden clubs and Communities in Bloom. I appreciate that they appreciate nice compost. Because of my methods I have no worries what so ever about my compost. I might someday get some tested but I can't justify the expense to do so.

No problem with the questions, not much going on in the winter anyways.

Lloyd

    Bookmark   January 17, 2008 at 4:48AM
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sandra_christie

well, all I can say is I wish I lived in your town!!!

    Bookmark   January 20, 2008 at 10:51PM
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mitanoff(Z4b Ontario)

Hope you don't mind me asking, but the search engines are not working properly.
I was wondering if one could keep throwing their kitchen scraps onto a compost heap during the winter months. It sounds from the post that the answer is no. (?)

    Bookmark   January 22, 2008 at 12:21PM
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swanz(z5NH)

Nice pics. Is that a homemade tumbler.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2008 at 10:11AM
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Lloyd

Is that a homemade tumbler.

Yes.

Here is a link that might be useful: Homemade tumbler.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2008 at 3:30AM
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dorisl(5)

I was wondering if one could keep throwing their kitchen scraps onto a compost heap during the winter months. It sounds from the post that the answer is no. (?)

When you live in the midwest, you cant let a little cold weather slow you down! Ive been throwing the stuff on the pile and layering in the paper.. Yep, it froze, but when it thaws, its gonna get SMOKING HOT, Im sure of it.

specially the BAGUETTES! HAHAHAHAHAH

    Bookmark   March 12, 2008 at 3:49PM
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kiddo_1(NE OH 5)

Hi Lloyd. Just checked out your pics. Got a question for ya. Just how long WILL it take for that quarter to finally break down? *snark*
Kris

    Bookmark   December 6, 2008 at 10:53AM
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Lloyd

HeHe. But Kris, that is a , our have a moose, elk, deer or some such other kind of ungulate on it.

I'm a poor farmer, couldn't afford to use a quarter.

Lloyd

    Bookmark   December 10, 2008 at 4:36PM
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Lloyd

Windrow slide show

Sheet Composting slide show.

These contain lots of photos. There are options for the speed and to toggle a commentary.

Lloyd

    Bookmark   December 12, 2008 at 6:18PM
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val_s(z5 central IL)

ungulate

If I didn't know that you had posted this before me, I would have sworn that it was payback for "patudy". Hate looking up words :-)

Val

    Bookmark   December 17, 2008 at 11:23AM
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Lloyd

Gotta admit it is a cool word. I enjoy a cool word thrown in now and then, sometimes I link em to a definition. I shoulda made a list of all the cool words I have seen here.

Lloyd Loyd Loid

    Bookmark   December 17, 2008 at 5:09PM
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val_s(z5 central IL)

Okay - I admit it - it is a cool word. I've been trying to think how to work it into a conversation :-)

Val

    Bookmark   December 18, 2008 at 9:23AM
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gnomey(7b SC zip296)

and I'll admit that I had to look it up. Quit using big word Loid. You make my head hurt.

    Bookmark   December 30, 2008 at 1:06AM
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val_s(z5 central IL)

I still haven't found a way to use "ungulate" in a sentence. Actually, I've been a little afraid to....someone might smack me.

Val

    Bookmark   December 30, 2008 at 7:54AM
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gnomey(7b SC zip296)

Val, they might.

    Bookmark   December 30, 2008 at 9:47PM
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