Compost is decomposed organic material, which can be used as a fertilizer and soil amendment.

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What useful things can I use shredded branches for?

I will be carrying out some heavy pruning of some over grown trees (mixture of deciduous, fruit and a few conifers) over the next few months. I am already planning to save some of the thicker, ...
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Putting fruit tree branches in compost

I just started composting. In addition to putting lawn clippings, kitchen waste and dry leaves what else can I put in? Is it okay to put branches of trees (fruit, olive, etc) in the compost?
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Can I put a compost pile under a tree?

The most convenient spot for my new compost pile happens to be under a young apple tree. I would put it there, but I have a few questions first. Will I be able to make successful compost in heavy ...
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Uses for grapevine branches?

It is the time of year when I start to cut back my rampant grape vines. I usually tie them together and leave them for the birds to nest, but this year I am creating a hugelkultur bed and I was ...
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Is this mushroom going to make my black radish taste weird or be poisonous?

It is still cold nowadays (mid-April) in east-France, so I started my vegetables inside a winter garden. I planted some tomatoes seeds in a large pot of mine, which I had previously filled with ...
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How to tell a good quality compost?

When starting a garden off, you often need to dig in compost. Ignoring the point that it may not be best to bring in compost from off site to improve your soil, how does one determine which of the ...
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Recommendations for Composting Bin

I want to start composting my yard and kitchen waste and use the compost to fertilize vegetables in my raised bed and some fruit trees I have. Right now I am not doing composting. My options are do ...
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4answers
803 views

Do's and Don't's for a backyard compost?

We have a backyard compost bin for our vegetable garden and a few flower beds. Forgive me for being a total noob on this, but can someone offer me couple of good resources on what's ok and not ok to ...
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Ground cover - maximizing value

I planted some fava beans a few months back as cover crop in my vegetable raised bed. They grew very well and as suggested my members of this group, I cut the top part and left the roots inside to ...
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Should I be burning evergreen trimmings?

I live in bucolic neighbourhood outside of town. Around here, when we trim evergreens we make a fire and burn them. It gives off a lot of smoke. Is this the best approach to deal with these? ...
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Is it normal that african night crawlers are always on top of my compost bin?

I don't usually put scrap foods on top so I am curious why african night crawlers are always on top of my bin? Is it because there's a lack of oxygen on the bottom part of my bin?
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Composting Bin - Experiences

I am very much in favor of getting a composting bin (like the one below). Before I do that, I want to get your thoughts on the following: Does it attract unwanted pests/rodents (bugs, mice, etc.)? ...
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Can I put scratch paper on my vermicompost?

I have lots of scratch paper here and am wondering if I should put it in my vermicompost or just throw it away. Would it be dangerous for worms? Will the soil benefit from it? As for the type of ...
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How many air holes for 100gal vermicomposter?

I'm fixing to start my vermicomposter. I'm using a damage 100gal Rubbermaid horse water tank. I'd like to know how many and of what sized hole to drill in the side for air. I figured maybe use a ...
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2answers
84 views

What are the main benefits and cons of using manure?

Manure is often part of a prescription for hot composting, and soil enrichment. But why? Is it just for nitrogen? Is that why people go and get the excrement of vegetarian mammals to add to their ...
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How much nitrogen per bale in a straw bale garden?

I recently read a NY Times article about straw bale gardening. It says that you should add about 2 1/2 cups of 20% N fertilizer or three pounds of blood meal and feather meal per bale. Add water, wait ...
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2answers
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Compost with newspaper cuttings and orange peels

I have started composting since last week and there are some questions which I want to ask. I have a small pot may be of 6 litres. I guess it's Bokashi composting. I read that for composting, wet ...
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1answer
98 views

What is the white stuff on the compost?

The surface of a compost plant is turning white for some reason. The white stuff is not fluffy and it looks like white powder or ashes. I had a look under the white stuff and it was perfectly normal. ...
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What potting mixes do you use?

I am new to gardening and I would like to know what ingredients and measurements do you use in your potting mix for three different types of plants: Plants that require plenty of water. Plants ...
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590 views

How much compost should I add to a clay soil for roses?

A few months ago I removed a lot of over grown shrubs; the soil is clay based topsoil on top of solid clay. The top soil is about one spade deep. I don’t think the garden has had any compost for ...
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How many coffee grounds are too many coffee grounds for composting?

I have a pretty steady access to about 4 pots of coffee worth of coffee grounds each day. I have heard coffee grounds are great for a compost pile, but I am wondering how much is too much? Is there a ...
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120 views

Square meter gardening Soil Mix

The Square meter garden soil mix is a third each of compost, peat moss and vermiculite. I have assumed that in the UK since most of our composts are around 50% peat moss I could just do: 2/3 compost ...
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How do I keep egg shells from smelling while waiting to add them to composting soil?

I do worm composting for the outside garden. I wanted to add egg shells and some other things that will add to the soil but are hard to break down in the worm composting bin. Since it will be outside ...
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How should I speed up the decomposition of sickly sweet smelling giant compost heap?

I have created a monster of a compost heap on my property (3 meters, by 2 meters, by almost 2 meters tall) next to an old granite rock wall. Anyway, I mostly put all my grass clippings (primary ...
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How can I speed up decomposition of fruit pits and the like?

I use a compost tumbler and often times I end up with a lot of fruit pits including avocado pits. I usually sift these out and leave them in a compost pile (which is enclosed by chicken wire) along ...
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Holes in hardy kiwi leaves

On my balcony I have just planted my hardy kiwi. I found that some leaves, particularly smaller ones, have holes: I'm using universal soil (ph 5.5-6.5). I'm watering it everyday as the flowerpot is ...
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Getting rid of maggots in a compost vessel

Related: Compost has larva or maggots? We have a compost vessel (around 300L) which we use as a supplement to our garbage can. We don't usually throw meat in it and we don't intend to ever do it ...
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Composting: what is the ideal proportion of 'green' to 'brown' material?

Everyone seems to have an opinion on this, but is there any definitive answer, ideally backed up by link/s to reputable sources or research? Ratio by weight or by volume.
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Measuring soil and compost for NPK

Folks, I'm trying to measure soil and compost for use in home gardening of vegetables and herbs. My goal is to use compost primarily, and augment it as necessary. The compost is mostly vermicompost, ...
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232 views

Can a big compost pile around its base kill my tree?

Will I kill a big birch tree if I put all my grass clippings around the base? The clippings (from 2 acres of grass) are now 2 feet deep around the tree. I have been told it will heat up and cause the ...
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1answer
42 views

Composting: what is the ratio of volume of material in to compost out?

Say you've got a compost heap, 1 full metre cube, with about 1 part green to 3 parts brown by volume. If this is left to break down, what volume of compost will be produced?
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What is the easiest way to get started with Bokashi (japanese “fermenting” composting)?

Someone suggested Bokash composting of non meat kitchen scraps b/c it doesn't attract insects nor does it smell. What's the easiest way to get started? Do I need to buy more bokashi "microbes" ...
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Should I compost bindweed leaves?

I have cleared a lot of bindweed from various parts of my garden. I'd like to keep it better controlled from now on. I have read that it's a good idea not to compost the roots, because they'll ...
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Is there an easier way to aerate my compost besides turning it?

I want to be a good composter, but turning my pile is backbreaking work. I was looking through a gardening magazine today and I saw a contraption that was basically a three foot long pole that had ...
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1answer
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How do I turn a plastic stock tank into a vermicomposter?

We have a Rubbermaid, plastic stock-tank. It has an unfixable crack in it and we've been saving it incase we could find a future use for it. I've just started getting into composting and I plan to ...
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Is Mike McGrath correct when he says vegetable scraps shouldn't be added to compost?

I'm composting for the first time this year, in a back-yard composter. I have some leaves in there, and I regularly throw in my coffee grounds. I also occasionally throw in vegetable and fruit scraps. ...
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What can I use sawdust for in a garden?

After sawing a lot of wood, we're left with quite a lot of sawdust. I have been using it during composting to ensure that the compost doesn't get too green and wet, but is there something else I can ...
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How can I compost oak leaves and sawdust?

I have the enviable problem of having several (6 or 7) cubic yards of both oak leaves and oak sawdust from having logged off and making cabinet lumber from many oak trees that once grew where our ...
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Could a compost bin with only green materials explode?

I have a compost pile but it's not in my home, and I need to store the kitchen scraps temporarily somewhere. I use a small plastic bin for that purpose. I don't have any brown materials, only ...
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Adding dirt/soil to a compost bin?

Reading multiple entries here and a few others onlne, I have noticed people writing about using dirt/soil in their compost piles/heaps/bins. I had never heard of putting either dirt or soil in a ...
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How can I make a soiless mix for raised beds?

We are making numerous raised beds and have been playing around with various combinations of bagged garden soil, compost, etc. to fill them but this method is both expensive and providing less than ...
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875 views

Is it safe to add compostable plastics to my compost pile?

A couple stores I frequent now use, or are starting to use, plastic bags and cups that say they're compostable. Are these safe to add to my compost pile or are they just more environmentally friendly ...
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Is it possible to do my own extensive soil/organic matter testing?

I've read the posts on soil testing, and I realize it's cheap and widely available through local universities, etc. Question: Is it possible to do my own soil testing? Are there some compounds that ...
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Can I put coffee filters into my compost?

I've heard that coffee grounds are a good "green"(nitrogen rich) to put in your compost, but I was wondering if I could throw the filter in there as well? They are the standard "accordion side" white ...
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3answers
167 views

Is it possible to have an odorless/near odorless indoor vermicompost?

Is it possible to have an odorless/near odorless indoor vermicompost system? Somewhere in the range of 3-7 gallons. What about purposing something like this on the scale of 65 gallons? Does size ...
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819 views

Can kitchen waste be used as manure?

Can kitchen wastes (like potato peels, onion skins, orange rinds, egg shells, tea inside tea bags etc) be used as manure? If so, how to use them?  Right now, I'm just dumping them in soil, which I ...
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Is this compost appropriate for transplanting/repotting tomatoes?

I have planted some tomato seeds (that came in a grow bag) in a flat planting tray and as the stems and leaves are growing up, I'm being convinced that I should move them back to the grow bags that ...
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Why build a worm bin? Why can't you have a worm heap?

I understand the value of vermiculture, and grew up with a wormbox on the back patio that made beautiful castings. What I don't understand is the purpose of the bin. If I kept a heap of worm-friendly ...
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Is this compost bin rodent-proof?

Is this compost bin rodent-proof? If not, how to find a similar but rodent-proof or at least relatively safe one in that regard? I want put put a compost bin in my backyard and put my food waste ...
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Can I add commercial roses to my compost pile?

I'm not sure what kind of chemicals store bought roses are usually treated with. Bonus question: Can I dump the water in the vase on the pile as well (with the little feeding packets they give you)?