1500 cubic yard of leaves how to compost fast???

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by lawnboyskc, Jan 24, 2014.

  1. lawnboyskc

    lawnboyskc LawnSite Member
    Posts: 24

    i have tons of leaves atleast 1500-2000 cubic yards of them if not more. ineed to compost these somewhat fast so space is empty next fall. i searched and all i found was on the smaller size piles. this is huge 100 feet by 300 feet or more area.


  2. P.Services

    P.Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,322

    They are going to rot down faster than you think just on their own.

    Two things they need to go fast. Oxygen and Water. Both being equally important with water being the easier of the two to provide. If you want to keep it basic just but a few sprinklers on them and turn them once a week with a machine the best you can. The more you turn the better they are, dont pack them down you want it light and fluffy. If you wanted to get crazy you could install a 4'' perforated PVC pipe grid to dump the pile over and then pump air through the pipes to force oxygen into the pile without having to turn it. Thats a lot of work and money though.

    There is some type of additive in the form of a chemical or mineral you can add that will speed it up lightning fast but i just cant remember what it is. Maybe Urea???? i just know the horse tracks add it into the manure and wood shavings to compost them down super fast to get more into the trucks hauling them away. They add it and then water it in. 4 days from shavings to compost.

    You could try to find some wholesale mulch producers and they may come take them for free if you can load them.
  3. nylesedwards

    nylesedwards LawnSite Member
    Posts: 86

    gas and a match?
  4. nightshutter

    nightshutter LawnSite Senior Member
    from UT
    Posts: 513

    I think I heard of putting urea on it also. as mentioned earlier water and air. Rotate
  5. SDLandscapes VT

    SDLandscapes VT LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 582

    Oxygen, water, and nitrogen and that pile will be reduced and usable quickly. stretch the pile into a long row for easier more consistent turning as well as better O2 exposure. dose the pile with manures and left over fertilizer
  6. lawnboyskc

    lawnboyskc LawnSite Member
    Posts: 24

    I've been waiting for rain or snow. Not in good location for sprinkler. I've also put 3 bags of winterizer on. 46-0-0. I fluffed up the pile and turned today with bobcat. It's really dry I'll see if I can figure way to water.
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  7. P.Services

    P.Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,322

    Yeah 3 bags on a 100' by 300' pile is going to make a huge difference. Insert heavy sarcasm here.

    Maybe you could drink a big gulp of dew and go wiz on it in a hour. That should make a big difference.
  8. lawnboyskc

    lawnboyskc LawnSite Member
    Posts: 24

    cool wasnt sure how much didnt want to go overkill. so how much then?
  9. P.Services

    P.Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,322

    I would do some research first and see if it is Urea they use. Urea is nothing but nitrogen but it will be much cheaper. If i had to guess i would say for 2,000 yards of leaves at least 50 bags if not more.

    How did you acquire such a large pile? dumping site for multiple companies?
  10. lawnboyskc

    lawnboyskc LawnSite Member
    Posts: 24

    ive tried searching internet and haven't found any formulas or ratios on it for 50lb bag to amount of leaves.

    2 20 yrd dump trucks dumping 1-2 times a day during thick of leaves. all have been mulched with mower than billy goat. just one company.

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