Anaerobic compost

pylot(usda 9b sunset 17)April 14, 2010

I have a tray system (3 trays) and I just emptied the bottom-most one. There were almost no worms in it (but there are plenty in the next tray) and instead of the normal vermicompost, it's a gooey, slimy, marsh-like paste that smells quite bad (although not unbearably so). My best guess is that there was too much food, or too wet, or whatever, and the compost went anaerobic. My question is what to do with it? Can I dry it a bit and use it as a soil amendment, or do I have to aerate it and compost it further? I'm not worried about the smell, I'm just wondering if there's anything toxic to plants or soil critters in it.

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Let it dry out a bit. As you do, stir it up a few times. That will expose more of it to the air. After a couple of weeks, it should be fine.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2010 at 3:03PM
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Dump the tray onto cardboard. The cardboard will absorb the extra water. You might even want to run the material through the system again. This time with more airy carbon material like cardboard in the system.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2010 at 4:41PM
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