11. Comments are moderated. Weeds. Ficus is fine. I have basic good house hold garbage; lettuce, celery. Some people advise composting dryer lint or hair from your hairbrushes. I realise that citrus scraps are not good in a compost tumbler being an enclosed system but what about citrus tree prunings ground up through a mulcher? Walnuts – In yet another unsuspected twist in the composting world, walnuts are a no-no. I compost them only in moderation. Not only is it a better choice than burning, it saves tremendously on using our main compost for … There are at least 100 things in your home that you can compost, which will greatly reduce the amount of trash you put out every week to go to the landfill. Knowing what's safe to throw in your composting bin, and what should stay out, can be confusing. But that doesn’t mean you can’t compost other things. What are your thoughts on cardboard ashes? You said the problem with coal ash is it can become acidic. But more than one composter has discovered, to his distress, that the grass he dumped into his compost pile, instead of decaying into a nice, dark, crumbly, humus-rich compost, has instead putrefied into a slimy, stinky mess.Grass does indeed make a fine feed-stock for compost, but it easily compacts into an oxygen-free mat. Wood fire ash from the fireplace can be added in moderation, but please put the coal and charcoal-briquet ash in the trash bin. I suggest you check out this post for more how-to information. Below we will discuss what to put in a compost bin (or keep out) and why. No and yes. Win/Win! Paver Patterns and Design Ideas for Your Patio, Artificial Grass Installation Services in San Diego and Orange County, Artificial Grass Cost â Installation Price Guide. The sawdust from pressure treated wood alone contains arsenic and cadmium—two toxins you definitely don’t want in your garden or your food! And was going to add citrus but will not do that I have also added some leaves. I have a kitchen composter sitting on my counter from HD. or is this still not recommended? Several days after spraying the weeds, there is still some clove oil odor, but the dead leaves are dry. !” you say? More info on that here. Dairy – Dairy, such as milk, butter and cheese, will break down, so it is not an absolute no-no for compost bins. Hi Dawn, my I use the information in this article on my composting website (the website will be up and running later this month). Dry pet food If that old bag of cat food is hopelessly stale, or your puppy refuses to taste a new brand of kibble, you can throw dry pet food into the compost bin. It can also make your compost pile smell, so it is bet to avoid it. Can I put moldy bread in my compost? If they are made of 100% paper, and totally empty, they can be composted. Proudly serving San Diego and Orange County, California. There are many brands of cereal these days using uncoated boxes, and most inks used these days are soy-based anyway. What to Put in a Compost Bin. I’ve been composting in large ceramic pots for a few years with great luck. Where is the best spot to have composted? Don’t add these to your compost bin: Dairy, meat or fish. Learn what to avoid throwing in the bin, and why. 12. Coal ash – It may be tempting to throw the ashes from your charcoal barbecue into your compost, particularly because other types of ash are fine to add. Once properly decomposed, the resulting humus can be used almost anywhere. I do not have any problems with odor, rats or other scrounging animals. Thanks so much! Yikes. However, it is not advisable to add the poop from dogs and cats (and other carnivores) to your compost. I would only use that compost around trees and other non-edibles. I’ve been discussing with a friend why they should not put weeds into the compost bin. Get the whole story behind SFF here. While it is fine to include small amounts of citrus fruits in your compost bin, adding too many can upset the balance and make your compost too acidic. Many of these plants grow back from small pieces of themselves. meter. Any animal product will draw insects and rodents, and begin to smell terrible as it breaks down. metres in size, I do not turn but do water during the hot weather (I live in northern Vi?t N?m). Starting from the soil-in-the-compost-bin point, you can continue to put in any food-waste. So make sure whatever you are putting in to the compost pile, that you are balancing your carbon/browns with your nitrogen/greens. If you’re going to use a compost tumbler to make your own nutrient-packed fertilizer, it’s important to know the right ingredients for the best mix. Not adding meat is not because it doesn’t successfully breakdown, it’s because it attracts unwanted pests and vermin. The only problem is that if they’re a hardy invasive species, they’ll grow back with abundance, and when you spread the compost around your garden, the weeds will grow in the places that you’ve spread that compost. Interesting information. If you really want a way to decompose almost anything, just bury it. //]]>. Fruit and veggie stickers legally have to be food-grade/biodegradable. Most people don’t mind giving you their leaves since they are just going in the landfill anyway. (Do not burn and add bones to your ash stock). Since it contains a high percentage of water (over 5… To avoid spreading fungi, unwanted bacteria and other plant diseases, do not include diseased plants in your compost bin. Please enter your information to confirm. If the tea bags are made of nylon (plastic) as many brands are, then no, they can’t go in the compost. My compost is full of worms, “If you only occasionally throw citrus peels and onion scraps into your compost bin, it’s no big deal, but if you vermicompost or have worm bins, then citrus peels, onions and garlic scraps are a no-no, because they will harm your worms.”. These are some of the most common products found on lists of what you should not compost; however, some of these products (as noted above) can actually be placed in a compost bin. Horse, cow, chicken and rabbit droppings are great additions to your compost pile. The only inside-the-house composting you can do is worm composting (also called Verni culture). Recycling will reduce the need of chopping trees, something way more important to focus on. To try to use as much waste as possible and to avoid these issues, some people maintain two or more compost bins. Coffee grounds and tea leaves definitely belong in a compost pile. If you can control for the critters, and don’t mind the smell, you can compost any biological product, including meat. Dawn is the creator of Small Footprint Family, and the author of the critically acclaimed Sustainability Starts at Home - How to Save Money While Saving the Planet. It’s fine, as long as the compost remains moist. They are not good for worms. It is best to avoid all pesticides and herbicides, since these can certainly affect your end product and the plants that are grown in it. Most of the mushrooms that pop up after a rain, I leave alone to go back into the lawn but we get some monster fungus around our fence that is kind of smelly and gross so I scooped it out from the fence and chopped it with the shovel blade and mixed into our compost. tea bags can go in compost and citrus and onions can as well. Or are they too acidic? Is it ok to put my empty sweet n low sweetener packets into our green compost bin? There may also be some risk if the meat has any possibility of being contaminated with e-coli, since that can live for several years. We have Redwood trees in our yard. The tumble-bin style compost bins can make life a lot easier if you’re using the slower cold composting process. How do you heat your compost pile up to 160 degrees, Dawn? If the weeds are not seedy, or do not reproduce along the roots, then definitely compost them! 1. Switch to equally effective non-toxic cleaning products, and washable cleaning rags, and it won’t be an issue! This only applies to hulled sunflower seeds like those used in bird seed, which are not treated with growth inhibitor but actually contain natural growth inhibitors to protect them from competition, much like walnuts do. I agree, the idea of green living is having a minimal impact on the environment. Types of compost bin. You do not want to put meat, dairy, or fats into your indoor (or outdoor) compost bin (though if you want to compost these items, look into Bokashi composting). I will begin to use paper towels, although that won’t amount to much. Proudly serving San Diego and Orange County, California. Those obnoxious little sticky labels and price tags on fruit and vegetables are made of “food-grade” plastic or vinyl, and do not biodegrade. I wouldn’t personally, but it’s your call. I would definitely not put it in my composter. For most backyard composters, it is okay to be somewhere in the middle, and you certainly will not ruin your compost bin if you accidentally toss a leftover turkey sandwich into it. Bins retain some warmth and moisture and make better compost more quickly, but even an open heap (not enclosed in a bin) will compost eventually. I had put the coal ash into the compost before I read this article, It wasn’t a big amount so what should I do , Do I need to clean out the compost bin and start over again ? When I first started I added a piece of cooked chicken that created a certain type of worms (not the soil worm) is like a whitish chubby worm. What do you do with your vegetable scraps after you’ve made stock? It shouldn’t go in compost or in your soil. 13. Not composting meat is an entirely personal choice. Once your compost pile is established, mix grass clippings and green waste into the pile and bury fruit and vegetable waste under 10 inches of compost material. You can compost sawdust as it soaks excess moisture in wet compost heaps but sawdust that comes from treated wood needs to be avoided. The other issue with placing your compost bins on concrete is not having access to the beneficial insects, microbes and worms found in native soil. A well-harvested compost pile is invaluable to any home garden. I’m not sure. This spring I had a tree fall due to a tornado. If not, just use the finished compost on trees and other inedibles. But even though technically you can compost anything that was once living, some things are better left out of the compost pile for the sake of better compost and less hassle. I am just starting my compost in a garden container/tower that has the compost shoot in the center and you grow plants all around it in layers. Compost Bins … Municipal composters can’t handle them, either. Decomposition happens in a natural way; however, the process will be accelerated by composting which is done by creating an environment that is ideal for the development of microorganisms and bacteria. It should also be noted that there are lots of things that are okay to compost in small amounts or that are sometimes okay to compost and sometimes not. If you put your bin too close to a tree or big shrub, the roots will end up growing into the base of your compost heap. I can easily have enough to last me for the year from just a few big bags. However, this is one temptation you will definitely want to avoid, since commercial charcoal products (like briquettes) are often treated with chemicals that have no place in a compost bin. can make up a significant percentage of the compost, and would be of harm. Anything organic can be safely composted, but not necessarily by the home composter. So I remain skeptical. Don’t compost tea or coffee bags unless you are certain they are made from natural materials, like cotton or hemp. We currently service most areas in San Diego County and Orange County, California. I use a shovel to dig down deep in the pile, put in the fish remains, and refill the hole. 10. I don’t want to make my own compost then find out I’ve been putting nasty stuff into my garden and crops. I partially filled the hole with dog poop. However, know there really isn’t a wrong place to put a compost bin. Anita, what happened with the tomatoes? Branch piles also make great habitat for small creatures and snakes too, so be aware of your local fauna before you start one. My dogs take a heartworm/intestinal worm preventative. If so, what do you and don’t you compost? This will, then, convert into compost. Can you compost papers towels that you have used cleaning products on eg windex or bleach? Do you use compost starter? (Personally, I usually put my onion scraps into the freezer to use when I make stock, and use citrus peels to make non-toxic DIY house cleaning sprays instead.). This includes bones and skin. Just be sure to shred them into bits before putting them in. Meat– In general, meat is on the not-to-compost list because of the risk of it attracting wildlife and your neighbor’s dog to rummage through your compost pile. These toxic compounds won’t break down in the composting process and can get into the soil, negatively affecting microorganism activity and plant health. I’m new to composting and just bought a tumbler compostr. Thank you for any respond. Plants sprayed with chemical herbicides or pesticides – Some chemical pesticides and herbicides may break down during the composting process, but others will not. In the dining room they ‘compost all paper towels, cooked foods meat, bone left overs etc… I had been led to believe that cooked food, meat and bones are not good for composting. . But for indoor and small-scale vermicomposters, they might only be composting food, therefore citrus, onions, etc. Now, instead of throwing out the filters, I still let them dry out, but I place them around the base of some of the vegetables, as a weed-block under the straw that I use to mulch the garden. Better to get some horticultural sulphur to acidify for blueberries. If you use an all-natural, wood charcoal, then it is okay to put the ashes in your compost pile. So unless you are sure that the sawdust is from untreated wood, it is best to not add it to your compost bin. . If your roofing material is one that includes heavy metals (like bitumen), you might want to leave the moss out of the compost. Happy composting! Hi, is it better to put fermented meat (from Bokashi bin) into compost? The average U.S. gardener is unable to maintain proper thermophylic conditions in their hobby compost pile, and the average U.S. compost pile is usually smaller than 1 cu. I suggest you find the scientific names for those species and contact your local Cooperative Extension Agency or Master Gardener to ask. It’s more important to return organic matter to the earth than ever before–ALL organic matter. You will likely have to jumpstart new compost with some existing compost that has those beneficials inside. Are Your Feminine Hygiene Products Toxic? Are the blues used in cardboard and correlated card toxic in wormeties and home compost bins. Or, should we avoid adding this material to the bins,so as not to affect the composting process? Potato chips, yes, absolutely. Generally, you want some shade as compost needs to stay moist for best decomposition. Is there any other reason to avoid it? But, as someone who has relied on a simple composting outhouse for 8 years, trust me: you don’t want to use human waste in your garden. While technically they will decompose just fine, you really don’t want to add fish and meat scraps to the compost pile. However, coffee grounds and tea leaves should only be added to compost if they are bag-less, or have been removed from their bags. Meat, bones and most animal products – We all know that bodies decompose, which would make you think that it is okay to put animal products like meat, fish, bones or lard in with the rest of your kitchen scraps. However, waste from animals that eat meat (and sometimes other weird and unknown things) is not a good addition to compost. A bad compost pile can be a stinky, slimy disaster. Sawdust from treated wood also takes a very long time to break down because it is protected from decay by the chemicals put on it, which will delay how soon you can use your compost on the garden. Save the ashes in a metal trash can. When I farmed in Canada I composted fish offal and carcasses with softwood chips. Madhava Organic Blonde Coconut Sugar, 6 lbs. Many paper products are potential compost fodder, especially soy-ink newspapers, old paper towels and tissues and even shredded cardboard. Hello. Here are the most common items you will find on lists of what not to compost, as well as the reasons most folks believe you should not compost them — so that you can decide what is right for your compost pile. When the material at the bottom is dark and rich in color, your compost is ready to use. Here's a list to make it easy to compost, adapted from the EPA, … then pour the liquid in with the flowers. Synthetic fertilizers (like the blue Miracle stuff) introduce high levels of inorganic elements into the garden ecosystem. Is it safe to compost the onions then?
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