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Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.

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Post  FamilyGardening Sun 6 Jan 2013 - 9:59

has anyone used sea weed in their compost bin?

happy gardening
rose
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Post  plantoid Sun 6 Jan 2013 - 12:43

Sabine ,

As Llama Momma says , the ripped up carboard turns to compost quite quickly once it's been wetted .
Most new cardboards boxes still have residues of insecticide in the card to stop the slugs eating the boxes if they get damp in the first few months of use.
It decays quite quickly when wetted and kept damp if it didn't we'd never see wworms galore in the cooler layers of our heaps.

Slugs tend to only go for newly decaying matter and fresh greenery .

Once you get a six inch to a foot deep mixture of things in the compost bin and stir it about or shove a long pointy broomstick down in it , the newly available oxygen feeds the microbes and fungi that make for the breakdown of materials ( composting ) . Considerable heat is produced and any slugs die as the temperature range is around 120 to 140 oF in the heap for several days at a time . It you turn the heap outsides to inside and rebuild it in your bin this aireation will restart the composting , so any slug eggs that might be in the bin stand a fair chance of being cooked to death , Rebuilding & aireating several times and the chances of any slugs are even less.


Last edited by plantoid on Sun 6 Jan 2013 - 13:05; edited 1 time in total
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Post  llama momma Sun 6 Jan 2013 - 12:55

plantoid wrote:Sabine ,

Most new cardboards boxes still have residues of insecticide in the card to stop the slugs eating the boxes if they get damp inn the first few months of use.

So whatever stops slugs doesn't bother worms. Interesting stuff since they are both soft and slimy critters. Wonder what mechinism is at work? thinking
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Post  CapeCoddess Sun 6 Jan 2013 - 13:00

FamilyGardening wrote:has anyone used sea weed in their compost bin?

happy gardening
rose

I use seaweed. Love it! But I don't have a compost bin, I have a pile. I also use seaweed as mulch.

CC
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Post  plantoid Sun 6 Jan 2013 - 13:12

llama momma wrote:
plantoid wrote:Sabine ,

Most new cardboards boxes still have residues of insecticide in the card to stop the slugs eating the boxes if they get damp inn the first few months of use.

So whatever stops slugs doesn't bother worms. Interesting stuff since they are both soft and slimy critters. Wonder what mechinism is at work? thinking

I suspect that the insecticide keeps them slugs & worms at bay and once decaying in the compost heap the heat and gasses in the heap kill them off

The worms seem to only live in the upper levels and the sides of actual composting material , rarely deep inside my heaps but sometimes they are found at floor level in a well finished & seasoned bin.

When my bins composts were seven months old there were worms everywhere but no sign of slugs at all.

In the early days of February last year I did cheat a wee bit on a couple of bins and gave a watering that contained some nematode slug control solution that kills and eats slugs
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Post  plantoid Sun 6 Jan 2013 - 13:19

Sabine and for any others interested ..... here is a link to cat worms & humans .

It applies to all feline and canines as well all round the world
Our dog never goes out off a leash but he produced masses of nine inch long round worms when we wormed him two weeks ago

http://www.petshed.com/petcyclopedia/human-risk-from-cat-worms.html

There is also info about dogs in the site.
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Post  FamilyGardening Sun 6 Jan 2013 - 14:00

CapeCoddess wrote:
FamilyGardening wrote:has anyone used sea weed in their compost bin?

happy gardening
rose

I use seaweed. Love it! But I don't have a compost bin, I have a pile. I also use seaweed as mulch.

CC

CC do you soak it first to remove the salt?....if so for how long?

hubby and i thought it would be fun to take the kids down by the bay and pick up some to add to the garden....we have been buying liquid sea weed and thought why buy it if we can get it free Very Happy

happy gardening
rose
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Post  plantoid Sun 6 Jan 2013 - 14:51

Rinse it in a couple of buckets of clean slightly warm water , put the salty water down the drain . Then put the washed weed on the compost heap and mix it in a bit .

To make your own liquid seaweed feed ( it stinks a bit )
Put a couple of pounds of washed sea weed in a bucket , pour on warm water cover to keep light and insects out , stir every three or four days after two weeks you have your liquid feed .

Drain off and store in a sealable 2 gallon container etc.. Use an egg cup of it to 4 pints of water , put the remaining mash in a hole on the compost pile & cover it up. Shouild last 6 months or so before going stale if kept in a cool area of the garage stood on a concrete floor /slab .

Leave it much longer and it will really start to pong , it will still be of use but not as a feed ....pour the whole contents of the bucket in a hole on the compost heap instead cover it up , don't get any on your clothes then go out for the afternoon Wink
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Post  FamilyGardening Sun 6 Jan 2013 - 15:16

Thank you Plantoid & CC

we are getting so excited to use our compost this year...the past few years we have been buying it because we only had a small composter....now we have much more...thanks to hubby!

thanks to our neighbors leaves, our lawn clippings and yard waste along with our kitchen waste and my sisters family kitchen waste ( they juice a ton so we get lots of waste from them )..... all of that has brought a ton of worms into the compost......i dont know where they came from....hubby went out to see if we had any heat in the piles and give them a turn.....and he said he couldnt believe how many red worms are in the heaps :drunken:

we will also be adding some mushroom compost we have found local that we can purchase for cheap by the truck load if we want too Very Happy

we are going to get free bunny poo from my nephew Very Happy

we may end up buying a couple of bags of composted chicken poo...to throw into the mix.....the plants really seem to love that stuff Very Happy

then if we add the seaweed......and worm castings from our worm bin......our plants may just take over our lawn! Shocked which would be ok with me tongue

happy gardening
rose
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Post  camprn Sun 6 Jan 2013 - 15:20

Not sure if this was mentioned before but if you pick up the seaweed at the beach, be sure to wash the salt off of it before it goes into the compost bin. Wink

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Post  Kelejan Sun 6 Jan 2013 - 17:18

FamilyGardening wrote:Thank you Plantoid & CC

we are getting so excited to use our compost this year...the past few years we have been buying it because we only had a small composter....now we have much more...thanks to hubby!

thanks to our neighbors leaves, our lawn clippings and yard waste along with our kitchen waste and my sisters family kitchen waste ( they juice a ton so we get lots of waste from them )..... all of that has brought a ton of worms into the compost......i dont know where they came from....hubby went out to see if we had any heat in the piles and give them a turn.....and he said he couldnt believe how many red worms are in the heaps :drunken:

we will also be adding some mushroom compost we have found local that we can purchase for cheap by the truck load if we want too Very Happy

we are going to get free bunny poo from my nephew Very Happy

we may end up buying a couple of bags of composted chicken poo...to throw into the mix.....the plants really seem to love that stuff Very Happy

then if we add the seaweed......and worm castings from our worm bin......our plants may just take over our lawn! Shocked which would be ok with me tongue

happy gardening
rose
Rose, you are not the only one getting excited about your compost this year. I think several of us are as well. I think we will now always have red worms in our compost; I am almost sure I never had any before last year. I am looking forward to a much better harvest this syear.
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Post  plantoid Sun 6 Jan 2013 - 17:34

Rose,
Don't add more than a bucket of mushroom compost at a time to you heap as it usually contains horse & chicken muck plus straw and lime or gypsum
the latter two are to break the manures down to help release the nutrients for the mushrooms and to produce heat to help them grow .

If it has much of the lime in it could upset your MM if you get to much in one go
Look up chlorossis of lime in plants ( or similar spellings ) for further info if you're into that sort of thing
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Post  FamilyGardening Mon 7 Jan 2013 - 8:17

thank you again Very Happy

this is what it says on their web site about their mushroom compost....

*It consists of 60% wheatstraw, 25% poultry litter, 10% gypsum, and 5% dried urea, which are combined and composted. Mushrooms are grown in the material and then picked. The spent compost is then sterilized and sold as a soil conditioner. This compost is generally tilled into existing soil and used in vegetable gardens and flower beds.*



happy gardening
rose

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Post  camprn Mon 7 Jan 2013 - 10:19

FamilyGardening wrote:thank you again Very Happy

this is what it says on their web site about their mushroom compost....

*It consists of 60% wheatstraw, 25% poultry litter, 10% gypsum, and 5% dried urea, which are combined and composted. Mushrooms are grown in the material and then picked. The spent compost is then sterilized and sold as a soil conditioner. This compost is generally tilled into existing soil and used in vegetable gardens and flower beds.*



happy gardening
rose

That all sounds perfectly fine to add directly.

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Post  CapeCoddess Mon 7 Jan 2013 - 10:53



I use seaweed. Love it! But I don't have a compost bin, I have a pile. I also use seaweed as mulch.

CC

CC do you soak it first to remove the salt?....if so for how long?

happy gardening
rose[/quote]

Nope, I don't rinse it per se. I read somewhere that the amount of salt is miniscule and doesn't cause damage. But I do try to get it after a rain and before the next tide. Sometimes I can, sometimes I can't. I haven't had any problem that I can see so far using it unrinsed.

CC
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Post  GWN Mon 7 Jan 2013 - 11:23

Rose, you are not the only one getting excited about your compost this year. I think several of us are as well. I think we will now always have red worms in our compost; I am almost sure I never had any before last year. I am looking forward to a much better harvest this syear.
kelejan me THREE....
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Post  Lindacol Mon 7 Jan 2013 - 15:07

Yesterday I picked up 5 feed sacks of very fresh horse manure. I also stopped at a Starbucks & was told to call in the morning the day I want to pick up used grounds & they would save them for me - but not overnight. I had already stopped at the closest location and they do not keep the grounds separate for recycling. Then today I found another one and scored a big bag (probably at least 25 lbs).
Yesterday before the wind & rain started I turned my nearly finished compost into a new smaller bin. Then I will be able to layer the new horse manure & coffee grounds with contents of the bin I have been pileing stuff into (goat manure & alfalfa, shredded paper, some leaves, kitchen waste).

I am excited about my compost but I still do not have worms in it.
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Post  camprn Thu 21 Mar 2013 - 16:05

Bump

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Post  yolos Sun 21 Jul 2013 - 15:02

I thought the following video series was fairly good for those just starting composting.  It took  a while to watch the whole series and much of it was repetative but still worth watching if you are just getting started.

http://uccemg.com/Soils-Fertilizers-Compost/Composting-Video-Series-386/
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Post  camprn Tue 6 Aug 2013 - 10:31

Todays haul for the compost heap. A bag of coffee bean chaff and a 15+# bag of used grounds.
COMPOST 101 - Page 7 00113

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Post  sanderson Tue 6 Aug 2013 - 13:21

Be still, my heart!

Composting is addictive, even if there's no place to use it!  Smile
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Post  WriterCPA Tue 6 Aug 2013 - 14:02

I'm using the second edition of "Let it Rot!: The Gardener's Guide to Composting (Third Edition) (Storey's Down-to-Earth Guides) [Paperback]"*
http://www.amazon.com/Let-Rot-Composting-Down---Earth/dp/1580170234/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1375822498&sr=8-1&keywords=LET+IT+ROT

Amazon has the new edition used for $3.95.  But my old version is clear and easy to use and the science of breaking down waste has not really changed much since the first edition came out in 1975.

*Plug for "The Book Thing" in Baltimore, a great source of free books! -- Talk about recycling at its best. It has many old tried and true gardening books, often with helpful notes from prior owners.  http://bookthing.org/
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Post  camprn Tue 6 Aug 2013 - 14:57

sanderson wrote:Be still, my heart!

Composting is addictive, even if there's no place to use it!  Smile
There's always somewhere to use compost!What a Face 

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Post  lyndeeloo Tue 6 Aug 2013 - 15:18

I was gifted a used turning composter. It looks like a food barrel on legs and it flips. Is anyone using one of these? I've been filling it and flipping it. When it got too wet I emptied it and let the compost dry out a bit and started again. It looks good and does not smell. I'm not sure how to tell when it's really done. Do I have to make sure it reaches a certain temperature like you talk about with the compost piles? I'd like to use it for my second planting. I stopped adding to it a week ago. I've been reading the posts about compost, but haven't seen any about this type of composter. Any advice for this first time composter would be appreciated!
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Post  jimmy cee Wed 7 Aug 2013 - 6:08

Lyndeeloo
I have a tumbler and picked up a few tips.
I try to dry material I add, at least not add anything soggy.
When material becomes to wet,  add browns, it will help dry.
Wet material attracts bugs.
My tumbler isnt quick, last batch I had, I placed in my compost pile.
Remember practice makes perfect...( I'll probably be gone before I get anywhere near perfect )
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