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compost

Post  mazzy on 8/14/2014, 6:35 pm

I got two side by side tumber composters off Craig's List.  I've been composting for about 2 months now and I'm very pleased with the first batch I made.  I used oak leaves which are difficult to break down and didn't really pay attention to the brown / green ratio but for some reason the compost looks fantastic.

Now that I've "winged it" I'm going to pay attention to the brown / green  ratio in the 2nd batch.  I've seen one discussion where it was stated that it should be 5% green to 95% brown.  Does that seem correct?  I'm also going to use different dried leaves that break down easier.  I add coffee grounds, egg shells, left overs from salads (even with salad dressing on them), and roots from vegetables I've pulled up.  I tumble about once every 2 or 3 days.

Any suggestions?

Thanks,
Mazzy
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Re: compost

Post  yolos on 8/14/2014, 7:21 pm

I have been told different things.  When I first started, someone on another forum said 1/3 green and 2/3 brown.  I found that 50/50 brown and green worked for my oak leaves and grass mixture.  It really depends on the type of brown and green.  Here is a calculator that will help determine best volumes of each.  But nothing ever works the same for everybody so it is a learning experience with the type of materials you have access to.  I have used the following website on occasion to see what is typical.  I only use the column headed Cu Ft and don't mess with all the other columns. 

http://www.klickitatcounty.org/solidwaste/fileshtml/organics/compostcalc.htm
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Re: compost

Post  mazzy on 8/14/2014, 8:22 pm

Wow...great calculator.  I found my dry loose leaves and coffee grounds and vegetable matter pose a 90% leaves to 10% green

Thanks,
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Re: compost

Post  camprn on 8/14/2014, 9:07 pm

@mazzy wrote:Wow...great calculator.
+1

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Re: compost

Post  sanderson on 8/14/2014, 10:01 pm

@camprn wrote:
@mazzy wrote:Wow...great calculator.
+1
+1
Would seafood/fish be food wastes? Or more like chicken manure?
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Re: compost

Post  camprn on 8/14/2014, 11:30 pm

@sanderson wrote:
@camprn wrote:
@mazzy wrote:Wow...great calculator.
+1
+1
Would seafood/fish be food wastes?  Or more like chicken manure?
it would be nitrogen rather than carbon. Does that answer your question? What a Face 

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Re: compost

Post  sanderson on 8/15/2014, 12:43 am

I was just wondering to which category in the calculator seafood shells/fish would be closest. According to the calculator the current new pile is around 31.
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Re: compost

Post  yolos on 8/15/2014, 8:54 am

@sanderson wrote:I was just wondering to which category in the calculator seafood shells/fish would be closest.  According to the calculator the current new pile is around 31.

I don't know how accurate the following chart is concerning the C:N ratio, but you could pick another category that has the same C:N ratio and use that.  It looks like the best match is laying hen manure.

http://www.norganics.com/applications/cnratio.pdf

It looks like shellfish is very high in N.
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Re: compost

Post  sanderson on 8/15/2014, 10:00 am

Thanks for the expanded chart. There are more options on it and one can find the product with the closest number and plug it in. I haven't given up on finding sea food shells / seaweed/ sea fish wastes for a future compost pile.
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Re: compost

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