cold or passive composting

marie99(z8 SC)December 19, 2005

You'd think other gardeners would be supportive, wouldn't you? Right now, I'm being scolded on the composting forum because I want info on cold or passive composting, and we don't do that, it isn't good enough. Arg.

I want to compost in smallish containers, about 5-10 gallons and never turn them. "They say" cold composting won't kill pathogens. I never even mentioned the size of my containers, I was afraid of what they would really think aobut that.

Do any of you compost in a similar manner? Has there been any problems with your compost or the plants you put it on?

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NorthHadley(z5Ma)

I don't compost in such a small amount.Problem being is that it takes longer to break down.You could do it in the percentage of green/brown matter as in a larger amount/scale just you are doing it in a smaller scale.
The thing to do is just take the info that you get about composting and just use it in a smaller scale.
If you are able try doing it both ways and determine than if going small or large is the route for you.
You would thing being a smaller amount it would break down faster but that is not always the case.Its the type of thing that you must do and determine yourself which is the best for you.
Let the forum know how it works for what ever way you go.
Personaly I have a "Earth Machine" and a standard plain pile method I use.They both work well with the Earth Machine being much faster and easier. Being a spinal cord injured guy in a manual wheelchair I'm able to do both the container type(Earth MAchine)and the pile which I must manualy turn over which is a lot more work than the container composting.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2005 at 3:42PM
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marie99(z8 SC)

I've decided to go with a whole lot of 5-10 gallon buckets. I'll give a report on how long this is taking later, and I warn you in advance, I don't mind if the compost is 100% done before I dump it. It will finish in place.

Since my soil is all sand and red clay, I made some raised beds for my veggies in my healthier days. I've also thought about making a small composter or 2 that would have no bottom and sit in the raised bed and get moved from spot to spot.

Slow is fine. I have all the time in the world.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2005 at 8:39AM
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mikeandbarb(z8 D/FW)

There is a lady I know, She told us on another forum that she had very large plastic bags that had leaves and grass in she left it closed and with in a year she had gold.

I believe I seen on the hosta forum someone had small bins under their deck and said that was how they composted. Sorry I recall what they composted.
Play around with composting just keep a journal with what you've done to which container.
Like container number 1,used dried leaves and grass clippings.Also keep track how much water you use or how often you water.
Container number 2 used dried leaves, grass clippings and add high yeild to speed up process.
Don't for get coffee grounds are good to use.

This is my first year composting but I'm doing it in an up and coming flower bed. It has turned out great and I have used some already. It is ready for spring so I'm looking forward to planting in it.
I have an even larger compost starting in another area. I have a pile of leaves about 5 foot by 5 foot it's just out in the open but covered with clear plastic, now I'm waiting for spring when I can cut the grass and add clippings to it LOL.

Happy composting

    Bookmark   January 19, 2006 at 10:57PM
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marie99(z8 SC)

The buckets are working great! Actaully many of the composters on the composting thread agree with me. They seem to have a 50/50 split over there whether to micromanage or let nature take its course. I have them sitting between the rows in the veggie garden now, and I'm trying to think of an easy dignified way to hide them. We don't have a deck and under the porch is bricked in.

The contents are hit and miss. Grass, sawdust, kitchen scraps, etc. I do have special ones for dog and cat poo that go on the ornamentals.

I only rely on rain water and a drain hole I put in each one with a drill. I might get a little fence to hide them behind.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2006 at 6:21PM
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dangsr(N Fla)

I use my lawn mower with a grass catcher to pick up and grind oak leaves then mix it with the grass clippings when I mow the lawn, I then mix the two and just pile it up and wet it completly through, In about a month of keeping it wet and turning it every week I then add nutrants and put it in pots and it is then a part of my container garden,

    Bookmark   March 15, 2006 at 6:40PM
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