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Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by acemario, Apr 17, 2012.
What do you know about composting?
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Well this is what i do. I have a compost pile that is in a round bin with no bottom. I use the layer system. I first put down newspaper and then i add a layer of green waste. (prunings or grass clippings). Then i add a brown layer like hay or straw. I then add a layer of chicken poop. I keep repeating the layers til it is full(can be done over days or weeks if needed). I water it in after i finish each lot. I then just leave it for a few months. Some people turn their compost but i don't and it seems to work just as well.Make sure to water it once a week or so and then after a few months it is ready to go.
Forgot to add i live on acerage so my bin is nowhere near the house but i have never really noticed it smell.
My bin is near my house, about 15 feet I think. It is in the corner near the fence. As long as you have a mixture of green (fresh grass clippings, food scraps, etc.) and browns (paper, straw, pine shavings, leaves) you don't have a smell at all. After I add food scraps I add a thin layer of leaves to keep the flys off. I just throw the chicken poop and straw in whenever I clean. If it smells when you dump it in then add leaves on top and that will take care of it. I use straw in the coop and for some reason my coop never smells, I am guessing because it is well ventilated. Anyway, I digress. If you keep it moist (not soaked) it will break down quickly, about 2 months.
Oh, you will get worms and bugs that are attracted to compost. Don't worry, when your compost is done you can let the girls go through it and it will keep them entertained for days.
Any kind of manure needs to compost for at least a year, to get rid of any bad bacteria....unless it is a HOT compost, then a few months will be ok.... shavings break down quickly, but you need to add other organic material, food scraps, grass clippings etc. for it to be really good compost. Wood shavings are not supposed to be used in any garden (veggie) beds, as they contribute carbon and leach the nitrogen, but it would be fine for any other landscaping.
Wow! These are just the tips I was looking for. It looks like we have some Pro-Composters here on BYC! Thanks for the tips. Have any of you heard of or used a barrel type system in which you tumble the barrel around every few days? I've seen one that looked like a mini satellite, and it was pretty interesting.
My neighbor has a barrel composter and it works well for them, but we make too much compost so several of those bins would be too expensive. We have will have three seperate piles in different stages at all times. We do try to keep the pile hot and green grass clippings with water will accomplish this. I don't like to spend too much money so we use one like this.
I did not hear about this and I need to research this issue more. Thank you very much!
Don't wanna hijack the thread but I am wondering about making a compost area out of pallets. I have quite a few since I did not use them for making my coop. Can I just nail them together and add the ingredients or do I need to line them with something to keep it all in? Should it have a bottom too?
I just started composting a couple months ago. My first try was not to schedule, it was supposed to be ready in 12 weeks, but it appears to be breaking down anyway. I done the layer method as described in #4. My mistake, I think, was watering after each layer. I have a square bin made from 3x3 tin sheets, oh yeah, the back is a recycled car hood from my teenagers fender bender! LOL
Anyway, I became impatient and opened up the bin and turned it last Sat. What I found was areas that appeared to be composting nicely, but some areas were matted leaves that didn't appear to be composting. I believe this was from overwatering when I first put them in.
So I mixed everything up real good and covered it so the sun could heat it up. I think it's hard to mess compost up, but you do have to be careful using manure because of the bacteria. They recommend a 140* to 160* internal temperature on the pile and to achieve this, you need a minimum 3 cubit square feet, from what I have read. I also read on a Washington U. release on composting that the layer method was no longer recommended, that the preferred method now is to mix everything up and turn it every so often. Which kind of contradicts letting it sit and heat up???
I have decided that when mine looks like uniform soil and I can't recognize the chicken poop from the oak leaves, then it's good to go!