Rice and bread

lilacs_of_mayAugust 11, 2007

(Don't yell at me. I'm a newbie.)

I heard somewhere that you shouldn't put rice or bread in the compost heap. Why not? Should you not put any grain type substance in a compost bin?

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Kimmsr(4a/5b-MI)

I see no reason to keep rice and bread out of the compost. Depending on which rice and bread you have (the white stuff is much less nutritious and tastes terrible) would be of much less value in the compost than would brown rice and whole wheat bread but as a general rule of thumb if you eat it you can compost it.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2007 at 7:07AM
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organica(7RichmondVA)

It's definitely compostible stuff - the danger is that grain products are very attractive to rodents and you could end up with rats in the compost. If you put that stuff in, I recommend you mix it in very well accompanied by a lot of coffee grounds. If you have anything approaching a rodent problem on your property, you might not want to risk it.
-O

    Bookmark   August 11, 2007 at 12:14PM
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Kimmsr(4a/5b-MI)

Grain products would be no more attractive to these rodents than any other food we eat, so if there are rodents around and you would not want to take a chance on attracting them you should not add any food products to your compost which kind of is one of the reasons to compost.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2007 at 7:07AM
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lilacs_of_may

I have a squirrel problem, but I've never seen any evidence of rats or mice.

Great. I'll compost it. I just hate to throw away anything that can serve as compost.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2007 at 9:45PM
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sabe(z7 NY)

I find the best way to mix breads, cereals, and chips into the pile is to stick them in a bucket of water for a day. It all breaks down into a mushy paste and then I pour the sludge into the pile.

and it keeps the critters from running away with the breadcrust

    Bookmark   August 13, 2007 at 12:45PM
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joepyeweed(5b IL)

I've heard that putting bread into your compost pile attracts planarians.

I've also heard that people who have soggy-bread-phobia strongly object to composting bread.

However, I have no such phobia and I'm not concerned about planarians, but out of respect for a dear friend with such a phobia, I refrain from composting bread. (Well at least I tell her that...)

    Bookmark   August 13, 2007 at 3:10PM
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alfie_md6

Hey, me too!

    Bookmark   August 13, 2007 at 4:13PM
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david52_gw

Well, I don't compost "bread" - per se. I have added cooked, discarded, finely ground grass seed mildly chemically leavened by yeast and even some times baking soda, but never just plain old "bread".

    Bookmark   August 13, 2007 at 9:49PM
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PaulNS(NS zone 6a)

In some people, bread in the compost pile induces aesthetic dyspepsia.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2007 at 6:57AM
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dorisl(5)

Composting, it aint pretty!

    Bookmark   August 14, 2007 at 9:44AM
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tsugajunkie z5 SE WI

If your compost has planarians it is a bit too moist.

tj

    Bookmark   August 14, 2007 at 7:22PM
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lilacs_of_may

I actually know what a planarian is. But the only time I've seen them has been in biology class.

I dumped yard debris on the rice and bread. Last I looked it hadn't been foraged. The squirrels did make off with what was left of an avocado once.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2007 at 2:02AM
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ralphdean

I get 20 - 30 loaves of week old bread from a distributor here. I let them out of their plastic bags to dry out a day or two then grind them. Mixed with everything else they compost just fine.

There is a local animal that likes the blueberry scones. He will not take anything else just the blueberry scones and only one a night.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2007 at 7:00PM
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grayentropy

Rice/Bread/paper= Carbohydrates=browns
veggie/fruit/grass/green=protein=greens.

Balancing kitchen wastes with browns such as breads, pastas, noodles, rice, napkins, tissues, etc. is a good thing and helps bring the C:N to optimal.

I have 2 hunting cats, live in MA and have never had a rodent problem in my compost.

If I did have a rodent problem I would add mammalian urine to the compst bin.

If I still had rodent problems I would compost some rodents.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2007 at 10:36PM
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bpgreen(5UT)

I always thought that things like bread, rice, pasta and so forth are browns (because they're carbohydrates/starches), but I've been told that they're greens, just like other grains. I think the key is that for our diets, they're considered carbs, but that's in comparison with things like meat. Since people use grains as fertilizer for the nitrogen content, I think they do count as greens (maybe weak greens, though).

    Bookmark   August 16, 2007 at 12:06AM
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Kimmsr(4a/5b-MI)

Whether bread or rice is just Carbon or is a source of some Nitrogen depends on whether you use a whole grain product or the typical nutrient free white products. White breads and white rice have so few nutrients that they are not something people or animals shyould be eating.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2007 at 7:20AM
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ralphdean

My vote is that they are browns. They do not heat up the compost heap.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2007 at 12:51PM
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alfie_md6

Bread is definitely a green. Even white bread is a green. Lumps of bread in the compost get hot.

(Not, of course, that I ever compost bread. Oh no. Never. I don't want planarians in my compost!)

    Bookmark   August 16, 2007 at 2:14PM
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