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Should I buy this compost tumbler?? Toplef10Should I buy this compost tumbler?? 1zd3ho10

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.

Should I buy this compost tumbler?? I22gcj10Should I buy this compost tumbler?? 14dhcg10

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Should I buy this compost tumbler??

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Should I buy this compost tumbler?? Empty Should I buy this compost tumbler??

Post  danieggert 2/1/2023, 4:51 pm

I am starting to compost and want to get a compost tumbler.

As I mentioned prior, I have two  4 x 8 raised gardens for  vegetables and one 4 x 8 that sits on the ground.  

 I also have a creek running through my yard with  100's  of difference hostas on the creek bank on my one acre lot.   In summer, I have a lot of annual plants as well,  That is the extent of my gardening.  Except for the ugly bushes around the house that hubby won't let me get rid of.

Amazon has a number of tumblers for sale as does Facebook marketplace, I don't mind used.

I found this one on Facebook for $200,   I contacted the manufacturer (Mantis) for info and they still sell it and can still service and have parts available.  They told me it currently sells for $800.  The owner of it says it is in perfect working condition.  I know $200 is a lot of $$ but if I am going to spend $100 for a smaller new one, I may as well invest a little more for a big one.  Normally, I am extremely thrifty (cheap)  Almost everything I have planted except for annuals and veggies, I have gotten for free.  I also always share my plants for free when they need to be split. 

My question is,   Is this overkill?  Too big?   A much smaller one that Amazon recommends is $100, so for another $100, I would be getting a much larger twin one.  I have  sent you a picture of what I am considering


Thanks in advance


Dani

Should I buy this compost tumbler?? 281891319_5533076903422706_1631101974134009765_n.jpg?stp=dst-jpg_p720x720&_nc_cat=109&ccb=1-7&_nc_sid=c48759&_nc_ohc=BW54JyA6R_cAX9qJvvZ&_nc_ht=scontent-ord5-1

Thanks in advance,   Dani 
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Post  OhioGardener 2/1/2023, 5:05 pm

The sort-of-link you posted does not work, so we cannot see what tumbler you are referring to.  But, remember that the tumbler must be totally filled before the clock starts on the composting activity. As long as you are adding to the tumbler, it cannot start composting since it has new material.  The larger the tumbler, the longer it takes to fill it. How much material will you have to add, and how fast will it fill?  That is the criteria.

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Post  OhioGardener 2/2/2023, 8:56 am

danieggert wrote:Good morning

I am sorry that the picture of my Tumblr that I am considering did not show up in my post

I am still learning the ropes on how to post and the forum

I really appreciated your comments on the composter
Since I can't figure out how to send a picture, yet, here is a link to the composter I am considering on Facebook marketplace

Please tell me what you think

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/502558225324527/?mibextid=dXMIcH


For many years I had the original ComposTumbler, which is now Mantis, that this one was designed after.  It worked very well, but it eventually rusted through and started dumping compost on the ground. I replaced that composter with two smaller Jora JK-270 composters, which are still in use.  I like the twin-bin smaller tumblers since it does not take me so long to fill one of the bins.

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Post  sanderson 2/3/2023, 2:34 am

The larger the tumbler the harder to turn. The only way I could turn my 80-gallon Lifetime tumbler was to hang on the side grips and use my weight to get it started.

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Post  Soose 2/3/2023, 6:09 am

I'm trying worms on a bigger scale instead of using the dual Lifetime tumbler we bought last summer. My kitchen scraps at least disappear in a couple of days, where the tumblers would be sitting... at least for now.
( Not sure in Summer what I'll do about garden culls. I cant blend those. Maybe I can put them down into a trashcan and use a string trimmer on them, get them pre-shredded. )

What do y'all think of a worms instead strategy?
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Post  OhioGardener 2/3/2023, 7:12 am

Soose wrote:What do y'all think of a worms instead strategy?

I think of it as worms in addition to, rather than instead of.

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Post  Soose 2/3/2023, 8:48 am

OhioGardener wrote:
Soose wrote:What do y'all think of a worms instead strategy?
I think of it as worms in addition to, rather than instead of.
TY OhioGardener.  I am just about to give up on the compost tumblers and put most in my open bins for now, let them compost the long slow way.  These Lifetime tumblers are heavy for me personally to turn well when they get full.  (I'm not real strong but am working on that with a gym trainer.)
But mainly, I don't feel I have the time to manage the operation.  Worms are my speed - a few minutes to blend the smoothie every 2 days.  It's just not working to have someone else do it -- btdt tried since last SPRING and have to accept it's not happening.  I am at the far ends of using up my bandwidth on other gardening tasks. 

I guess I could have a pre-collection bin for greens, then build the mix myself and manage the steps where we adjust the temps by adding greens or browns, and give the task of turning tumblers to one of the guys. 

Let me get your procedure down in some easy steps and when we have some warmer temps (stuff froze when we had our very rare 2F degrees back beginning of this month), I'll give it a go.  Though I do not have any kitchen scraps -- they're being fed to the worms now.  I'm going to have to barter for some.

Add 10gal veg scraps/juice pulp to one tumbler.  Add about 1/2 gal pine pellets.  Toss.  Measure temp after a couple of days. 
OhioGardener wrote:And, you will soon learn to use the smell of the compost to adjust the greens or browns as necessary. If the compost smells sweet and forest-like, it is great. If it smells of ammonia it has too much green and needs some browns added. If it has no smell and looks dry, it has too much brown and needs some greens added.

https://squarefoot.forumotion.com/t23566p25-new-lifetime-compost-tumbler#304321
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Post  OhioGardener 2/3/2023, 3:08 pm

Always keep in mind that there is a huge difference between Compost and Worm Castings, they are not interchangeable.  Generally speaking, compost is a growing medium, and worm castings is a soil amendment.

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Post  Soose 2/3/2023, 5:55 pm

OhioGardener wrote:Always keep in mind that there is a huge difference between Compost and Worm Castings, they are not interchangeable.  Generally speaking, compost is a growing medium, and worm castings is a soil amendment.

TY, point taken.  My worms are bedding and eating in 12" deep compost.  (I know that's deep but it's winter and I wanted to give them some extra insulation in the IBC tote.  )    I don't know how to separate the castings out. 

Ok, I will have to try to turn my attention back to the compost operation, either that or just take a risk, to buy a whole load of compost -- after I get the seed-starting operation up to speed and the greenhouse assembled.  I just need to accept the reality that a whole better part of a year to work with the compost manager here -- the person in charge of it --  to try to make it functional, has none of it had the needed end results.  And if it's going to be done I'll have to do it,  despite my being overloaded with all else.  I really have enough to do without being the compost person here.  I can manage the worms.
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Post  sanderson 2/4/2023, 3:38 am

OhioGardener wrote:
Soose wrote:What do y'all think of a worms instead strategy?

I think of it as worms in addition to, rather than instead of.
I agree. Worm castings are high in phosphorus like manure-based composts. These should be limited to 5% and 20% of the total composts, respectively.

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Post  Soose 2/4/2023, 11:37 am

sanderson wrote:I agree.  Worm castings are high in phosphorus like manure-based composts.  These should be limited to 5% and 20% of the total composts, respectively.

I will have to work on the compost routines.  Don't get me wrong, I like composting.  I'm just overloaded with things to do and remember and manage.
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