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#300188 - 10/12/21 07:17 PM Any gardeners around here ?
Chisel Offline

Registered: 12/05/05
Posts: 1434
Got a question about composting

Been watching videos about composting and it seems everyone has a bin or two or three , and they fill them with kitchen scraps, sprinkle them with water every few days, and turn them for aeriation.

OK, that is simple enough. However, if you have a continuous flow of kitchen scraps, how do you manage the composting bin ? Do you throw stuff in it daily ? If so, the stuff will not be at the same stage of decay. Some will be still visible food scraps (like banana or orange peels, or lettuce leaves), while older stuff have already turned into brown fertilizer. There will not be a "DONE date".

So, what is the trick ?

#300189 - 10/12/21 08:44 PM Re: Any gardeners around here ? [Re: Chisel]
dougwalkabout Offline
Crazy Canuck
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/03/07
Posts: 3054
Loc: Alberta, Canada
My season is short. I find it best to treat the "primary digester" compost bins as separate systems. I add, fill, add, fill, mixing a few times a week; and when it's running hot and pretty full, I leave it work. Then I start filling the second one. It doesn't have to be perfect like commercial compost; it will finish working in the soil.

Some people use a screen, somewhere between 1/2" and 1" mesh, to filter out the unfinished stuff and send it back through the system.

I also have a slow pile, a multi-year project for gnarly stuff like sunflower stalks and tough, fibrous beasties. I just keep adding on top, stomp and chop with a sharp shovel, and down the road there's a lovely pile of finished material at the bottom. (I also deposit "liquid vitamin x" as I'm walking by, for the nitrogen and phosphorous; but that's another conversation.)

#300190 - 10/13/21 04:40 AM Re: Any gardeners around here ? [Re: Chisel]
Chisel Offline

Registered: 12/05/05
Posts: 1434
Thanks Doug

I am a novice gardener. My gardening style is chaotic at best. I even bury food scraps directly in the soil. It seems to work. But I need your thoughts on that


#300191 - 10/13/21 11:45 AM Re: Any gardeners around here ? [Re: Chisel]
M_a_x Online   happy
Old Hand

Registered: 08/16/02
Posts: 1167
Loc: Germany
Do not overthink it. Having mutiple bins (or heaps) is the easiest approach. Start a new one at your own pace and leave the previous one to get "done". Just make sure to have some worms in the new one.
When you have a steady flow of kitchen scraps from only a few people vermicomposting may be a thing for you. That also gives you an abundant source of fishing bait. Some people even do it indoors.
If it isnīt broken, it doesnīt have enough features yet.

#300319 - 11/05/21 03:00 PM Re: Any gardeners around here ? [Re: Chisel]
Chisel Offline

Registered: 12/05/05
Posts: 1434

#300324 - 11/07/21 04:16 PM Re: Any gardeners around here ? [Re: Chisel]
Treeseeker Offline

Registered: 03/29/12
Posts: 188
Loc: California
I use only one bin. Periodically, I use a sifter made with a 1x2 inch wood frame (about 18" square) which is screened with 1/4 inch mesh screen. I just screen it into an old plastic cement mixer tray. Then I pour it into an old trash can for storage until needed. Or, I fill pots directly from the cement mixer tray.


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