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What elements are needed for a Compost Pile?

LawnoftheMonth

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
Houston, Tx
I have a customer that is throwing fruit, fence lumber and who knows what else into a pile in her back yard, and it isnt decomposing at all, it seems like something is missing...but I have no idea what that is...

I searched first, btw :waving:
 

Darryl G

Inactive
Sounds like they have a dump site and not a compost pile. I'd think the fruit would compost but lumber, lol. I have a couple different compost piles, one is ground up leaves, grass clippings and weeds and the other is bulk leaves. Well, I actually have 3 of the leave/grass/weeds going at a time, one accumulating, one finishing and one finished. Then there's the brush pile.

You need some green matter in there, it's best if it's turned now an then so you have aerobic rather than anaerobic decompostion, and it needs moisture.
 

Marcos

LawnSite Gold Member
Location
Cincinnati OH
I have a customer that is throwing fruit, fence lumber and who knows what else into a pile in her back yard, and it isnt decomposing at all, it seems like something is missing...but I have no idea what that is...

I searched first, btw :waving:
Fence lumber in the compost pile, you say? :confused:
That's an honest-to-goodness COMPOST INFRACTION!
LawnoftheMonth, what your customer needs is the.... Green Police! :laugh::laugh::laugh:

http://embedr.com/playlist/breitbart...e-green-police
 

Marcos

LawnSite Gold Member
Location
Cincinnati OH
But seriously now!.....:laugh:
Have the customer pull a little soil from around the compost pile & layer it in amongst the fruit rinds, grass clippings, hair, coffee grounds, dryer lint, vacuum cleaner bag contents, etc, etc.

There are of course tons of microbes in soil that will happily feed on the protein & carbs in all that stuff.

You don't need a whole lot of soil, just small amounts in between layers of compost.

Most importantly, though, the customer needs to turn the pile every so often in order to introduce needed oxygen.
Turning the compost pile is where "fence post lumber" might become a bit of a problem! :waving::laugh:

And once this 1st pile is 'finished', they should save a bit of it to use as "soil" to use in another one.
Or, like me, they could have 2 piles going at the same time, at two different stages of ripeness.
 
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