Bag count 2012

thatcompostguyDecember 5, 2012

I'm up to about the 420 bags of leaves range so far this year. That's everything from tall kitchen bags sparsely filled with whole oak leaves to the monster 50 gallon bags jammed with mower bagged grass clips and leaf chips. Last night, I got 130 bags and about a third were the big bags with grass clips and leaf chips mixed. Those are awesome! Heavy, but awesome!

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PKponder TX(7b)

Congratulations on that massive score! You must have a huge composting site!

We have 20 mature white oaks in our suburban yard and I have to say, it's just too many leaves to compost! This is our third fall in this house and for the past two summers we weren't able to use all of the stockpiled mulched leaves. We mulch them and add to all of the garden beds and store three big bins of mulched leaves but just never get enough greens to compost them and they break down so slowly by themselves. Last weekend we filled four of those big paper bags and put them out by the street. I was really happy to see that someone came and picked them up. We have too much shade for a lot of grass clippings and I just haven't made the time to pick up used coffee bags from Starbucks.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 3:46PM
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rickd(9-10)

I think you've got me beat.

I set up two circular wire bins for leaves, each 4' high and about 8' in diameter, so a volume of about 7.5 yd3 each. I've got one full (actually filled it once and it settled about 20% so I refilled it) and the other is 1/2 full.

I discovered a quick and easy source for leaves: a local landscape service company. I noticed their trucks inside a fenced yard downtown one morning, and each truck was piled high with plastic tarps full of leaves. They have a dumpster in the yard where they empty them each morning or afternoon. They let me take them by the truckload.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 7:03PM
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thatcompostguy

I just dump them in a pile with horse manure and turn it with the front end loader once in a while. I'll spread some directly on the main veggie plot and turn them under. I've found it just as easy to do either. But it's nice not having to confine it. Right now with probably 6 or 8 large loads of manure, the pile stands about 8 or 10 feet tall and probably 10 x 20 feet at the base. I'll resume hauling manure in January unless they call with a full pit before then.

Several years ago I did this and it was amazing how much steam pours out of the pile when I'd dig into it after it had been sitting for a while.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2012 at 8:19AM
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pnbrown

A lot is possible with big machines.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2012 at 8:45AM
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Angeline84(2b)

Here I thought I was doing good with my 6 bags of leaves! But, I do live on the prairies so how much could I really expect haha

    Bookmark   December 6, 2012 at 9:59AM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

So few people around here use bags, I'm afraid of what they thought needed to be bagged... Sadly, something I no longer do except on a personal level from yards of friends and family.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2012 at 12:18PM
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Lloyd

I only got 54 truck loads of leaves this fall. Each load averages about 160 bags so the fall total would be just over 8600 bags. Due to sudden heavy snowfall I have about 12 loads just sitting in the field in their bags. I might have to hire some students to give me a hand in the spring. My yearly (March 20 to Nov 7) total is just over 400 metric tonnes of yard trimmings diverted from the landfill.

Edited to add, some of those fall bags would have been garden materials so it wasn't all leaves.

Lloyd

This post was edited by pt03 on Thu, Dec 6, 12 at 13:14

    Bookmark   December 6, 2012 at 1:12PM
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annpatt

Oh, good grief. I can't win.

I've brought home about 150 waste bags of leaves/grass/plant material/pumpkins from the Brewer dump this year, so I was delighted to see someone start a thread where I could put everyone else to shame with my numbers.

I'm put out now.

I bag or bin my excess leaves for future leaf mold, but I also always choose a different section of my yard each year to cover with a deep layer of leaves for lazy soil improvement.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2012 at 1:58PM
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thatcompostguy

I see increasing numbers of folks around here that don't bag their leaves and force the community to bring their front end loaders out with dump trucks to collect them. But they scrape the dirt and grass and generally make a mess occasionally. And I see some folks that mow now that might have bagged in the past, which is also fine by me. But my mouth waters every morning now as I drive to and from work past piles of loose leaves that would cover my little car. Just waiting for the vacuum truck to come by and get them. Maybe next year those will be mine instead of the neighboring town's.

My goal used to be 300 bags a year where they didn't bag them. Then it grew to 1000 bags a year now that I'm where they do bag them. But I have competing thieves. I think they just ride the fringe of the subdivision, whereas I go into and through it all completely and thoroughly.

I don't know what I'd do with 9000 bags. I have a time with what I bring home by myself.

It's good exercise. I keep telling myself...

    Bookmark   December 6, 2012 at 3:34PM
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LoboGothic(6b SW Ontario CANADA)

One year the township vacuum truck came to my place several times and ejected its contents. It was fascinating to watch. All I had to do was ask. They were happy to have somewhere to dump the leaves.

Now every fall I pick up what I can with my van. No contest.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2013 at 8:34PM
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robertz6

So far no one has crossed the collecting threshold into insanity -- where a backyard composter rents or buys a vac & shredder big rig.

I found my composting may have gone a bit too far. As my tomato patch got more composted organic matter in it over the years, tomato production went down. A recent Mother Earth News article suggested I may have to worry more about other folks discarded materials. Even bags in the fall have some grass in them. The first three or fours years I had great tomatoes, the last few years have been awful. While a number of factors could be possible causes, I plant 4-7 types of tomatoes a year.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2013 at 3:51PM
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thatcompostguy

I didn't buy a big rig. I built one! Well, a little rig. First one was based on a 2 horse trailer. About 10 years ago. 8 HP lawn vac mounted up front in what used to be the tack area.

Next rendition is in the works. 16 foot trailer frame with the vac mounted on the rear. Had someone weld on a receiver hitch and rig up a way to slide the vac on and off so I can put it in storage the rest of the year. It's just a frame right now, but I have wood to cover the bed, then I want to go up 4 feet with 2x4's in stake pockets and put conduit hoops on top covered with a tarp. I have metal roofing that I will use to make the sides, two 8 foot pieces, I hope. Then I want to put a double layer of plywood up front to help stop any wayward rocks that get sucked in. The plywood will extend all the way up to the top of the conduit hoop. The back end will also have plywood and will be easily removable for unloading.

I figure I can fill it up, dismount the vac, pull the back off, then lift the front with the front end loader so I'll be unloading "down hill" and that will have to help. Still haven't figured out how to make unloading easier yet without getting really expensive. A moving floor would be ideal. I suppose I could try chaining things up in the box and dragging them out the rear with something. I fear that would cause bulging on the sides more than sliding out the rear. I'll figure something sooner or later. Gotta get it built first. :-)

    Bookmark   January 23, 2013 at 3:32PM
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robertz6

Maybe there should be a compost guideline -- say no more than 5 to 10 percent of the back yard should be devoted to compost piles (corner lots exempted).

    Bookmark   January 23, 2013 at 5:43PM
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thatcompostguy

10 percent of 8 acres is still almost 1 acre. I'm good with that if I could just find enough stuff to compost. :-)

    Bookmark   January 24, 2013 at 9:25AM
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auntyara(5a)

I didn't get any :(
That evil Sandy ruined my streak of getting crazy amounts of opbl. waaaaah! I Still have a ton of work to do to make my yard look normal again.
Thank goodness for insurance! We're getting a new roof and siding this Spring.
Don't feel bad for me. I still have a few bags hidden in the woods from 2011. heeheehee.
:) Laura

    Bookmark   February 5, 2013 at 10:14AM
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