Newbie Question--Compost Additives

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Newbie Question--Compost Additives

Post by mikjack.. » Tue, 18 Jul 2000 04:00:00



I just bought a Compost Bin from Garden Supply Co.  The only place I
have to put it in my yard is pretty shady, so I'm guessing that I might
need to use some additives to make the pile compost quickly.  Garden
Supply Co. sent a bag of "Activator" and "Energizer" with the bin, but
this stuff would be pretty expensive to use all of the time.  Can
anyone suggest any low-price alternatives to add to the pile to speed
up composting?  Thanks.

MJ

Sent via Deja.com http://www.deja.com/
Before you buy.

 
 
 

Newbie Question--Compost Additives

Post by Paul Onsta » Tue, 18 Jul 2000 04:00:00


Quote:

> I just bought a Compost Bin from Garden Supply Co.  The only place I
> have to put it in my yard is pretty shady, so I'm guessing that I might
> need to use some additives to make the pile compost quickly.  Garden
> Supply Co. sent a bag of "Activator" and "Energizer" with the bin, but
> this stuff would be pretty expensive to use all of the time.  Can
> anyone suggest any low-price alternatives to add to the pile to speed
> up composting?  Thanks.

Forget the activator. The required bacteria is all over anything that has
touched soil. Even the smallest bit of material left in the composter from
one use will suffice for next.

Those activators "work" by putting in a lot of nitrogen. You can do the same
with grass clippings, coffee grounds, etc.

BTW, composting in the sun IS much faster, but as you say...

  -Paul

 
 
 

Newbie Question--Compost Additives

Post by Bill Morg » Tue, 18 Jul 2000 04:00:00


Quote:

> I just bought a Compost Bin from Garden Supply Co.  The only place I
> have to put it in my yard is pretty shady, so I'm guessing that I might
> need to use some additives to make the pile compost quickly.  Garden
> Supply Co. sent a bag of "Activator" and "Energizer" with the bin, but
> this stuff would be pretty expensive to use all of the time.  Can
> anyone suggest any low-price alternatives to add to the pile to speed
> up composting?  Thanks.

The agents of decay are everywhere.

This means that you don't need the activators. Since you got a freebie, use
it. People were making compost for thousands of years before this stuff hit
the market, and natural process has been going on w/o human help for eons.

Some people like to mix old compost or some soil into their compost heaps
in order to seed it with bacteria, but even that isn't a necessity. Just
keep a balance of "green" and "brown", and you're set. Your money would be
better spent on a good garden reference with a section on composting.

Regards,
Bill

--

"Those who do not learn the lessons of science fiction are condemned to
live them."  

 
 
 

Newbie Question--Compost Additives

Post by Gandy Dance » Wed, 19 Jul 2000 04:00:00


Here's some interesting reading for you:

http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/extension/compost/chapter2.html

Gandy

Quote:

>I just bought a Compost Bin from Garden Supply Co.  The only place I
>have to put it in my yard is pretty shady, so I'm guessing that I might
>need to use some additives to make the pile compost quickly.  Garden
>Supply Co. sent a bag of "Activator" and "Energizer" with the bin, but
>this stuff would be pretty expensive to use all of the time.  Can
>anyone suggest any low-price alternatives to add to the pile to speed
>up composting?  Thanks.

>MJ

 
 
 

Newbie Question--Compost Additives

Post by John Wheele » Wed, 19 Jul 2000 04:00:00


Activators are the snake oil of the compost world.  You absolutely don't
need it if you're composting outside on the ground.  All the bacteria you
need is living in your soil.  My compost containers are in the shade now so
I can turn them without getting sunburned.  The termperature of the hotter
containers are about 145 degrees, which is almost too hot.  Nitrogen,
stiring and turning, chopping into small pieces--that's the key to good
compost.
Quote:

> I just bought a Compost Bin from Garden Supply Co.  The only place I
> have to put it in my yard is pretty shady, so I'm guessing that I might
> need to use some additives to make the pile compost quickly.  Garden
> Supply Co. sent a bag of "Activator" and "Energizer" with the bin, but
> this stuff would be pretty expensive to use all of the time.  Can
> anyone suggest any low-price alternatives to add to the pile to speed
> up composting?  Thanks.

> MJ

> Sent via Deja.com http://www.deja.com/
> Before you buy.

 
 
 

Newbie Question--Compost Additives

Post by Chris Owen » Wed, 19 Jul 2000 04:00:00


Quote:

> I just bought a Compost Bin from Garden Supply Co.  The only place I
> have to put it in my yard is pretty shady, so I'm guessing that I might
> need to use some additives to make the pile compost quickly.  Garden
> Supply Co. sent a bag of "Activator" and "Energizer" with the bin, but
> this stuff would be pretty expensive to use all of the time.  Can
> anyone suggest any low-price alternatives to add to the pile to speed
> up composting?  Thanks.

You don't need any.  The things which affect composting speed the most
are turning the pile, and having an adequate mix, including sufficient
-- but not too much -- moisture.

Chris Owens

 
 
 

Newbie Question--Compost Additives

Post by Chris Owen » Wed, 19 Jul 2000 04:00:00


Quote:

> I just bought a Compost Bin from Garden Supply Co.  The only place I
> have to put it in my yard is pretty shady, so I'm guessing that I might
> need to use some additives to make the pile compost quickly.  Garden
> Supply Co. sent a bag of "Activator" and "Energizer" with the bin, but
> this stuff would be pretty expensive to use all of the time.  Can
> anyone suggest any low-price alternatives to add to the pile to speed
> up composting?  Thanks.

You don't need any.  The things which affect composting speed the most
are turning the pile, and having an adequate mix, including sufficient
-- but not too much -- moisture.

Chris Owens