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RE: [hreg] Composting Systems

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  • Russell Warren
    I use the tumbler from Costco. I am very satisfied with it. ... From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of Tyra Rankin Sent:
    Message 1 of 14 , Aug 4, 2010
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      I use the tumbler from Costco.  I am very satisfied with it.
       
       
      -----Original Message-----
      From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of Tyra Rankin
      Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:15 PM
      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [hreg] Composting Systems

       

      I know this group is Renewable Energy, not gardening, but many of you are serious gardeners.  Are there composting systems you recommend buying for household kitchen waste? 

      Tyra

    • Tyra Rankin
      Thanks so much, Russell. Tyra _____ From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Russell Warren Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:18
      Message 2 of 14 , Aug 4, 2010
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        Thanks so much, Russell.

        Tyra


        From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Russell Warren
        Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:18 PM
        To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: RE: [hreg] Composting Systems

         

         

        I use the tumbler from Costco.  I am very satisfied with it.

         

         

        -----Original Message-----
        From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups. com]On Behalf Of Tyra Rankin
        Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:15 PM
        To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
        Subject: [hreg] Composting Systems

         

        I know this group is Renewable Energy, not gardening, but many of you are serious gardeners.  Are there composting systems you recommend buying for household kitchen waste? 

        Tyra

      • Jay
        It depends on how much space you have. If you have lots of outdoor space, you can t beat a regular compost heap. I tried several tumbler designs and had
        Message 3 of 14 , Aug 4, 2010
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          It depends on how much space you have. If you have lots of outdoor space, you can't beat a regular compost heap. I tried several tumbler designs and had reasonable results. The tumbler is faster (6 months for quality compost instead of 12), but I am on my third tumbler and they are getting expensive. The metal parts keep rotting out, even the stainless steel ones. Maybe I should try aluminum :) The traditional heap definitely wins out as you compost more and more quantity, particularly homesteads or farms.

          Recently I have come to like vermicomposting. That means composting with worms. I use the "Worm Factory 360". It can be used indoors with no smell, and is very fast compared with either tumber or heap methods. Compost now takes only 3 months. The 360 can handle about a pound a day. It's awesome for most urban and suburban people, but totally inadequate for homesteads or farms.

          What I now use is the "Worm Factory 360" as the primary composter. I keep it indoors. Any excess waste beyond the 1 pound a day goes into the old tumbler. I will quit using my last tumbler once it breaks (I give it 2 more years, tops) and go back to a regular heap.

          Good luck :)



          --- In hreg@yahoogroups.com, "Tyra Rankin" <tyra@...> wrote:
          >
          > I know this group is Renewable Energy, not gardening, but many of you are
          > serious gardeners. Are there composting systems you recommend buying for
          > household kitchen waste?
          >
          >
          >
          > Tyra
          >
        • Tyra Rankin
          Jay - how interesting! It sounds like the chemical breakdown process eats up metal tumblers. The time frame you describe for vermicomposting is really
          Message 4 of 14 , Aug 4, 2010
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            Jay – how interesting!  It sounds like the chemical breakdown process eats up metal tumblers.  The time frame you describe for vermicomposting is really attractive, as is indoor use.  I’m inclined to try the Worm Factory, despite its name.

            Thank you.

            Tyra

             


            From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups.com ] On Behalf Of Jay
            Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:31 PM
            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

             

             

            It depends on how much space you have. If you have lots of outdoor space, you can't beat a regular compost heap. I tried several tumbler designs and had reasonable results. The tumbler is faster (6 months for quality compost instead of 12), but I am on my third tumbler and they are getting expensive. The metal parts keep rotting out, even the stainless steel ones. Maybe I should try aluminum :) The traditional heap definitely wins out as you compost more and more quantity, particularly homesteads or farms.

            Recently I have come to like vermicomposting. That means composting with worms. I use the "Worm Factory 360". It can be used indoors with no smell, and is very fast compared with either tumber or heap methods. Compost now takes only 3 months. The 360 can handle about a pound a day. It's awesome for most urban and suburban people, but totally inadequate for homesteads or farms.

            What I now use is the "Worm Factory 360" as the primary composter. I keep it indoors. Any excess waste beyond the 1 pound a day goes into the old tumbler. I will quit using my last tumbler once it breaks (I give it 2 more years, tops) and go back to a regular heap.

            Good luck :)

            --- In hreg@yahoogroups.com, "Tyra Rankin" <tyra@...> wrote:

            >
            > I know this group is Renewable Energy, not gardening, but many of you are
            > serious gardeners. Are there composting systems you recommend buying for
            > household kitchen waste?
            >
            >
            >
            > Tyra
            >

          • evelyn sardina
            Hi Tyra You can cut the bottom off a big clay  pot. I had it cut from a guy that sells them on the side of the road. Dig a hole in the ground smaller that the
            Message 5 of 14 , Aug 5, 2010
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              Hi Tyra
              You can cut the bottom off a big clay  pot. I had it cut from a guy that sells
              them on the side of the road. Dig a hole in the ground smaller that the pot hole.
              If you turn the pot upside down you get a wider area on the ground.
              Throw the scraps in. You may find a cover at a second hand shop made
              of any metal or plastic that has holes in them. There are many to choose from.
              This cover is good to keep the critters out but will let the water in. You could also get creative and make one with window screening material. The pot will get really hot. When it is full just leave it  for a few months while it decomposes and you may want to start another pot that way you always have one going. When it looks ready tip the pot over and you have your compost and the area will be ready to plant. I tipped one over thingking i was going to
              stir it up but it was completly decomposted. Just an idea......
              --- On Wed, 8/4/10, Tyra Rankin <tyra@...> wrote:

              From: Tyra Rankin <tyra@...>
              Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems
              To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
              Date: Wednesday, August 4, 2010, 10:52 PM

               

              Jay – how interesting!  It sounds like the chemical breakdown process eats up metal tumblers.  The time frame you describe for vermicomposting is really attractive, as is indoor use.  I’m inclined to try the Worm Factory, despite its name.

              Thank you.

              Tyra

               


              From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Jay
              Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:31 PM
              To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
              Subject: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

               

               

              It depends on how much space you have. If you have lots of outdoor space, you can't beat a regular compost heap. I tried several tumbler designs and had reasonable results. The tumbler is faster (6 months for quality compost instead of 12), but I am on my third tumbler and they are getting expensive. The metal parts keep rotting out, even the stainless steel ones. Maybe I should try aluminum :) The traditional heap definitely wins out as you compost more and more quantity, particularly homesteads or farms.

              Recently I have come to like vermicomposting. That means composting with worms. I use the "Worm Factory 360". It can be used indoors with no smell, and is very fast compared with either tumber or heap methods. Compost now takes only 3 months. The 360 can handle about a pound a day. It's awesome for most urban and suburban people, but totally inadequate for homesteads or farms.

              What I now use is the "Worm Factory 360" as the primary composter. I keep it indoors. Any excess waste beyond the 1 pound a day goes into the old tumbler. I will quit using my last tumbler once it breaks (I give it 2 more years, tops) and go back to a regular heap.

              Good luck :)

              --- In hreg@yahoogroups. com, "Tyra Rankin" <tyra@...> wrote:
              >
              > I know this group is Renewable Energy, not gardening, but many of you are
              > serious gardeners. Are there composting systems you recommend buying for
              > household kitchen waste?
              >
              >
              >
              > Tyra
              >

            • Anne Kelly
              I have also seen online directions for making worm composters out of Rbbermaid bins with holes in them.  They are probably not as suitable for indoor use,
              Message 6 of 14 , Aug 5, 2010
              • 0 Attachment
                I have also seen online directions for making worm composters out of Rbbermaid bins with holes in them.  They are probably not as suitable for indoor use, though!

                --- On Thu, 8/5/10, evelyn sardina <evelynsardina@...> wrote:

                From: evelyn sardina <evelynsardina@...>
                Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems
                To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                Date: Thursday, August 5, 2010, 5:26 PM

                 

                 


                From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Jay
                Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:31 PM
                To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                Subject: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

                 

                 

                It depends on how much space you have. If you have lots of outdoor space, you can't beat a regular compost heap. I tried several tumbler designs and had reasonable results. The tumbler is faster (6 months for quality compost instead of 12), but I am on my third tumbler and they are getting expensive. The metal parts keep rotting out, even the stainless steel ones. Maybe I should try aluminum :) The traditional heap definitely wins out as you compost more and more quantity, particularly homesteads or farms.

                Recently I have come to like vermicomposting. That means composting with worms. I use the "Worm Factory 360". It can be used indoors with no smell, and is very fast compared with either tumber or heap methods. Compost now takes only 3 months. The 360 can handle about a pound a day. It's awesome for most urban and suburban people, but totally inadequate for homesteads or farms.

                What I now use is the "Worm Factory 360" as the primary composter. I keep it indoors. Any excess waste beyond the 1 pound a day goes into the old tumbler. I will quit using my last tumbler once it breaks (I give it 2 more years, tops) and go back to a regular heap.

                Good luck :)

                --- In hreg@yahoogroups. com, "Tyra Rankin" <tyra@...> wrote:
                >
                > I know this group is Renewable Energy, not gardening, but many of you are
                > serious gardeners. Are there composting systems you recommend buying for
                > household kitchen waste?
                >
                >
                >
                > Tyra
                >
                Hi Tyra
                You can cut the bottom off a big clay  pot. I had it cut from a guy that sells
                them on the side of the road. Dig a hole in the ground smaller that the pot hole.
                If you turn the pot upside down you get a wider area on the ground.
                Throw the scraps in. You may find a cover at a second hand shop made
                of any metal or plastic that has holes in them. There are many to choose from.
                This cover is good to keep the critters out but will let the water in. You could also get creative and make one with window screening material. The pot will get really hot. When it is full just leave it  for a few months while it decomposes and you may want to start another pot that way you always have one going. When it looks ready tip the pot over and you have your compost and the area will be ready to plant. I tipped one over thingking i was going to
                stir it up but it was completly decomposted. Just an idea......
                --- On Wed, 8/4/10, Tyra Rankin <tyra@...> wrote:

                From: Tyra Rankin <tyra@...>
                Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems
                To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                Date: Wednesday, August 4, 2010, 10:52 PM

                 

                Jay – how interesting!  It sounds like the chemical breakdown process eats up metal tumblers.  The time frame you describe for vermicomposting is really attractive, as is indoor use.  I’m inclined to try the Worm Factory, despite its name.

                Thank you.

                Tyra



              • priyanka johri
                Tyra Hi! I have several different tumblers on display at the institute but my best compost comes out of my pile on the ground. I just used secong hand palletts
                Message 7 of 14 , Aug 6, 2010
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                  Tyra Hi!
                  I have several different tumblers on display at the institute but my best compost comes out of my pile on the ground. I just used secong hand palletts and made a squarish box. Used a recycled chicken fence around it and started throwing my kitchen waste in there. When you have your waste in direct contact with ground worms and bacteria exchange between the ground and your compost pile helps things break down faster. My on ground compost is ready with in 4-5 months. If some bigger pieces are kleft i just screen it and put it in the next pile. I am a lazy gardner and don't turn my pile too often but allthe earth worms in there do a great job of airating the system.
                  Evelyn's idea of pot is also great. All the compost tea that gets in the ground makes it really fertile as you move your compost pile around you will get a nutrient rich patch to plant in.
                  Barrels cut in half will do the same job. Paint them black for extra heat. It will give you bigger area but pot will look more beautiful.
                  Don't waste your money on tumbler.
                  Worm factory works great too and you can use Rubber Maid box it works fine and is much cheaper. Make sure you drill 4 vent holes. Put small louve in there with mosquito screen so worms won't crawl out. Keep it in the dark place as worms like dark and moist space. Works fine. No need to buy worm factory.
                  Hope it helps. If you have more questions let me know and you are welcome to visit.
                  priyanka
                  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                  Priyanka
                  Priyanka Johri
                  832-277-3577
                   
                  Sustainable Living Institute -   www.IndusValleySustainableLivingInstitute.com
                  Green Yoga & Retreat Center - www.IndusValleyYoga.com
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                • Tyra Rankin
                  Evelyn: Thank you so much - I have a lot of big clay pots. That sounds easy and fun to do the process. I can t wait to set them up. Best, Tyra _____ From:
                  Message 8 of 14 , Aug 6, 2010
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                    Evelyn:  Thank you so much – I have a lot of big clay pots.  That sounds easy and fun to do the process.  I can’t wait to set them up.

                     

                    Best,

                    Tyra

                     


                    From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups.com ] On Behalf Of evelyn sardina
                    Sent: Thursday, August 05, 2010 5:27 PM
                    To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

                     

                     

                    Hi Tyra

                    You can cut the bottom off a big clay  pot. I had it cut from a guy that sells

                    them on the side of the road. Dig a hole in the ground smaller that the pot hole.

                    If you turn the pot upside down you get a wider area on the ground.

                    Throw the scraps in. You may find a cover at a second hand shop made

                    of any metal or plastic that has holes in them. There are many to choose from.

                    This cover is good to keep the critters out but will let the water in. You could also get creative and make one with window screening material. The pot will get really hot. When it is full just leave it  for a few months while it decomposes and you may want to start another pot that way you always have one going. When it looks ready tip the pot over and you have your compost and the area will be ready to plant. I tipped one over thingking i was going to

                    stir it up but it was completly decomposted. Just an idea......
                    --- On Wed, 8/4/10, Tyra Rankin < tyra@... > wrote:


                    From: Tyra Rankin < tyra@... >
                    Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems
                    To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                    Date: Wednesday, August 4, 2010, 10:52 PM

                     

                    Jay – how interesting!  It sounds like the chemical breakdown process eats up metal tumblers.  The time frame you describe for vermicomposting is really attractive, as is indoor use.  I’m inclined to try the Worm Factory, despite its name.

                    Thank you.

                    Tyra

                     


                    From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Jay
                    Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:31 PM
                    To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                    Subject: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

                     

                     

                    It depends on how much space you have. If you have lots of outdoor space, you can't beat a regular compost heap. I tried several tumbler designs and had reasonable results. The tumbler is faster (6 months for quality compost instead of 12), but I am on my third tumbler and they are getting expensive. The metal parts keep rotting out, even the stainless steel ones. Maybe I should try aluminum :) The traditional heap definitely wins out as you compost more and more quantity, particularly homesteads or farms.

                    Recently I have come to like vermicomposting. That means composting with worms. I use the "Worm Factory 360". It can be used indoors with no smell, and is very fast compared with either tumber or heap methods. Compost now takes only 3 months. The 360 can handle about a pound a day. It's awesome for most urban and suburban people, but totally inadequate for homesteads or farms.

                    What I now use is the "Worm Factory 360" as the primary composter. I keep it indoors. Any excess waste beyond the 1 pound a day goes into the old tumbler. I will quit using my last tumbler once it breaks (I give it 2 more years, tops) and go back to a regular heap.

                    Good luck :)

                    --- In hreg@yahoogroups. com, "Tyra Rankin" <tyra@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > I know this group is Renewable Energy, not gardening, but many of you are
                    > serious gardeners. Are there composting systems you recommend buying for
                    > household kitchen waste?
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > Tyra
                    >

                     

                  • Tyra Rankin
                    The worm idea is fantastic! Sounds like they speed up the process. Thanks, Anne Tyra _____ From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
                    Message 9 of 14 , Aug 6, 2010
                    • 0 Attachment

                      The worm idea is fantastic!  Sounds like they speed up the process.

                      Thanks, Anne

                      Tyra

                       


                      From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups.com ] On Behalf Of Anne Kelly
                      Sent: Thursday, August 05, 2010 5:40 PM
                      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                      Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

                       

                       

                      I have also seen online directions for making worm composters out of Rbbermaid bins with holes in them.  They are probably not as suitable for indoor use, though!

                      --- On Thu, 8/5/10, evelyn sardina <evelynsardina@ yahoo.com> wrote:


                      From: evelyn sardina <evelynsardina@ yahoo.com>
                      Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems
                      To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                      Date: Thursday, August 5, 2010, 5:26 PM

                       

                      Hi Tyra

                      You can cut the bottom off a big clay  pot. I had it cut from a guy that sells

                      them on the side of the road. Dig a hole in the ground smaller that the pot hole.

                      If you turn the pot upside down you get a wider area on the ground.

                      Throw the scraps in. You may find a cover at a second hand shop made

                      of any metal or plastic that has holes in them. There are many to choose from.

                      This cover is good to keep the critters out but will let the water in. You could also get creative and make one with window screening material. The pot will get really hot. When it is full just leave it  for a few months while it decomposes and you may want to start another pot that way you always have one going. When it looks ready tip the pot over and you have your compost and the area will be ready to plant. I tipped one over thingking i was going to

                      stir it up but it was completly decomposted. Just an idea......
                      --- On Wed, 8/4/10, Tyra Rankin < tyra@... > wrote:


                      From: Tyra Rankin < tyra@... >
                      Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems
                      To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                      Date: Wednesday, August 4, 2010, 10:52 PM

                       

                      Jay – how interesting!  It sounds like the chemical breakdown process eats up metal tumblers.  The time frame you describe for vermicomposting is really attractive, as is indoor use.  I’m inclined to try the Worm Factory, despite its name.

                      Thank you.

                      Tyra

                       


                      From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Jay
                      Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:31 PM
                      To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                      Subject: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

                       

                       

                      It depends on how much space you have. If you have lots of outdoor space, you can't beat a regular compost heap. I tried several tumbler designs and had reasonable results. The tumbler is faster (6 months for quality compost instead of 12), but I am on my third tumbler and they are getting expensive. The metal parts keep rotting out, even the stainless steel ones. Maybe I should try aluminum :) The traditional heap definitely wins out as you compost more and more quantity, particularly homesteads or farms.

                      Recently I have come to like vermicomposting. That means composting with worms. I use the "Worm Factory 360". It can be used indoors with no smell, and is very fast compared with either tumber or heap methods. Compost now takes only 3 months. The 360 can handle about a pound a day. It's awesome for most urban and suburban people, but totally inadequate for homesteads or farms.

                      What I now use is the "Worm Factory 360" as the primary composter. I keep it indoors. Any excess waste beyond the 1 pound a day goes into the old tumbler. I will quit using my last tumbler once it breaks (I give it 2 more years, tops) and go back to a regular heap.

                      Good luck :)

                      --- In hreg@yahoogroups. com, "Tyra Rankin" <tyra@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > I know this group is Renewable Energy, not gardening, but many of you are
                      > serious gardeners. Are there composting systems you recommend buying for
                      > household kitchen waste?
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Tyra
                      >

                       

                    • Scarsella, Thomas M. (JSC-IS4)[TESSADA &
                      We put our compostable materials in a pile, on the ground, up against a chain link fence. We always have three adjacent piles in different stages of
                      Message 10 of 14 , Aug 6, 2010
                      • 0 Attachment

                        We put our compostable materials in a pile, on the ground, up against a chain link fence.  We always have three adjacent piles in different stages of decomposition.  One we add to, one that’s getting ready to be dug out, and one we’re taking finished compost from.  We sieve most of what we dig out and toss the bits that may need a little more time onto the pile we’re currently adding to.  In Houston, it takes about a year for a particular pile to thoroughly break down but we always have some compost available and we’re never more than a few months away from a fresh batch. 

                         

                        Everything that can go into the compost does; we don’t worry too much about having a green-skewed green to brown ratio.   Most of the compost goes back into the various garden beds.  Any excess gets spread somewhat randomly around the rest of the yard.   

                         

                        Be mindful:  Size matters.  The bigger the pile, the more heat it generates and the faster the mass gets reduced to something useful.  In a cool climate a small compost pile can sit on the ground for an eternity and take years to break down.  If your compost does not get noticeably more compact after a Summer rain, it’s too small and you need to add more material to it.  Beware of adding whole bags of grass clippings in a big clump.  They will undergo anaerobic decay and get stinky-slimy before the good microbes get to work on them. You need to mix grass in with the top few inches of stuff to avoid that.

                         

                        Tom S.

                         

                        From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Tyra Rankin
                        Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:53 PM
                        To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                        Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

                         

                         

                        Jay – how interesting!  It sounds like the chemical breakdown process eats up metal tumblers.  The time frame you describe for vermicomposting is really attractive, as is indoor use.  I’m inclined to try the Worm Factory, despite its name.

                        Thank you.

                        Tyra

                         


                        From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Jay
                        Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:31 PM
                        To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                        Subject: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

                         

                         

                        It depends on how much space you have. If you have lots of outdoor space, you can't beat a regular compost heap. I tried several tumbler designs and had reasonable results. The tumbler is faster (6 months for quality compost instead of 12), but I am on my third tumbler and they are getting expensive. The metal parts keep rotting out, even the stainless steel ones. Maybe I should try aluminum :) The traditional heap definitely wins out as you compost more and more quantity, particularly homesteads or farms.

                        Recently I have come to like vermicomposting. That means composting with worms. I use the "Worm Factory 360". It can be used indoors with no smell, and is very fast compared with either tumber or heap methods. Compost now takes only 3 months. The 360 can handle about a pound a day. It's awesome for most urban and suburban people, but totally inadequate for homesteads or farms.

                        What I now use is the "Worm Factory 360" as the primary composter. I keep it indoors. Any excess waste beyond the 1 pound a day goes into the old tumbler. I will quit using my last tumbler once it breaks (I give it 2 more years, tops) and go back to a regular heap.

                        Good luck :)

                        --- In hreg@yahoogroups.com, "Tyra Rankin" <tyra@...> wrote:

                        >
                        > I know this group is Renewable Energy, not gardening, but many of you are
                        > serious gardeners. Are there composting systems you recommend buying for
                        > household kitchen waste?
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > Tyra
                        >

                      • Tyra Rankin
                        This is fascinating, Tom. With all the heat generated, composting could become a renewable energy project after all! Thank you very much for such useful
                        Message 11 of 14 , Aug 6, 2010
                        • 0 Attachment

                          This is fascinating, Tom.  With all the heat generated, composting could become a renewable energy project after all!

                          Thank you very much for such useful guidance.

                          Best,

                          Tyra


                          From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Scarsella, Thomas M. (JSC-IS4)[TESSADA & ASSOC INC]
                          Sent: Friday, August 06, 2010 10:48 AM
                          To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                          Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

                           

                           

                          We put our compostable materials in a pile, on the ground, up against a chain link fence.  We always have three adjacent piles in different stages of decomposition.  One we add to, one that’s getting ready to be dug out, and one we’re taking finished compost from.  We sieve most of what we dig out and toss the bits that may need a little more time onto the pile we’re currently adding to.  In Houston , it takes about a year for a particular pile to thoroughly break down but we always have some compost available and we’re never more than a few months away from a fresh batch. 

                           

                          Everything that can go into the compost does; we don’t worry too much about having a green-skewed green to brown ratio.   Most of the compost goes back into the various garden beds.  Any excess gets spread somewhat randomly around the rest of the yard.   

                           

                          Be mindful:  Size matters.  The bigger the pile, the more heat it generates and the faster the mass gets reduced to something useful.  In a cool climate a small compost pile can sit on the ground for an eternity and take years to break down.  If your compost does not get noticeably more compact after a Summer rain, it’s too small and you need to add more material to it.  Beware of adding whole bags of grass clippings in a big clump.  They will undergo anaerobic decay and get stinky-slimy before the good microbes get to work on them. You need to mix grass in with the top few inches of stuff to avoid that.

                           

                          Tom S.

                           

                          From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups. com] On Behalf Of Tyra Rankin
                          Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:53 PM
                          To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                          Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

                           

                           

                          Jay – how interesting!  It sounds like the chemical breakdown process eats up metal tumblers.  The time frame you describe for vermicomposting is really attractive, as is indoor use.  I’m inclined to try the Worm Factory, despite its name.

                          Thank you.

                          Tyra

                           


                          From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@ yahoogroups. com] On Behalf Of Jay
                          Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:31 PM
                          To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                          Subject: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

                           

                           

                          It depends on how much space you have. If you have lots of outdoor space, you can't beat a regular compost heap. I tried several tumbler designs and had reasonable results. The tumbler is faster (6 months for quality compost instead of 12), but I am on my third tumbler and they are getting expensive. The metal parts keep rotting out, even the stainless steel ones. Maybe I should try aluminum :) The traditional heap definitely wins out as you compost more and more quantity, particularly homesteads or farms.

                          Recently I have come to like vermicomposting. That means composting with worms. I use the "Worm Factory 360". It can be used indoors with no smell, and is very fast compared with either tumber or heap methods. Compost now takes only 3 months. The 360 can handle about a pound a day. It's awesome for most urban and suburban people, but totally inadequate for homesteads or farms.

                          What I now use is the "Worm Factory 360" as the primary composter. I keep it indoors. Any excess waste beyond the 1 pound a day goes into the old tumbler. I will quit using my last tumbler once it breaks (I give it 2 more years, tops) and go back to a regular heap.

                          Good luck :)

                          --- In hreg@yahoogroups. com, "Tyra Rankin" <tyra@...> wrote:

                          >
                          > I know this group is Renewable Energy, not gardening, but many of you are
                          > serious gardeners. Are there composting systems you recommend buying for
                          > household kitchen waste?
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > Tyra
                          >

                        • Scarsella, Thomas M. (JSC-IS4)[TESSADA &
                          There was a garden store in my hometown and on the countertop was a ruler mounted on a small DC motor. They d buried a copper line with a one-way valve and a
                          Message 12 of 14 , Aug 6, 2010
                          • 0 Attachment

                            There was a garden store in my hometown and on the countertop was a ruler mounted on a small DC motor.  They’d buried a copper line with a one-way valve and a small in-line generator under their compost pile in the 1950s.  The ruler had been spinning for 40 years at one point with only a few pauses to replace the motor and that sort of thing.  I’m sure a larger-scale project with a serious up-front design effort would generate enough power to light a few bulbs, turn a fan, or maybe run a low voltage appliance like a cellphone. 

                             

                            The compost behind the garden store was large but they had just flung the copper lines down on the ground.  There was no way they were capturing even one percent of the heat energy produced.  One does wonder what could be done with something like that……

                             

                            From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Tyra Rankin
                            Sent: Friday, August 06, 2010 12:17 PM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                            Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

                             

                             

                            This is fascinating, Tom.  With all the heat generated, composting could become a renewable energy project after all!

                            Thank you very much for such useful guidance.

                            Best,

                            Tyra


                            From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Scarsella, Thomas M. (JSC-IS4)[TESSADA & ASSOC INC]
                            Sent: Friday, August 06, 2010 10:48 AM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                            Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

                             

                             

                            We put our compostable materials in a pile, on the ground, up against a chain link fence.  We always have three adjacent piles in different stages of decomposition.  One we add to, one that’s getting ready to be dug out, and one we’re taking finished compost from.  We sieve most of what we dig out and toss the bits that may need a little more time onto the pile we’re currently adding to.  In Houston, it takes about a year for a particular pile to thoroughly break down but we always have some compost available and we’re never more than a few months away from a fresh batch. 

                             

                            Everything that can go into the compost does; we don’t worry too much about having a green-skewed green to brown ratio.   Most of the compost goes back into the various garden beds.  Any excess gets spread somewhat randomly around the rest of the yard.   

                             

                            Be mindful:  Size matters.  The bigger the pile, the more heat it generates and the faster the mass gets reduced to something useful.  In a cool climate a small compost pile can sit on the ground for an eternity and take years to break down.  If your compost does not get noticeably more compact after a Summer rain, it’s too small and you need to add more material to it.  Beware of adding whole bags of grass clippings in a big clump.  They will undergo anaerobic decay and get stinky-slimy before the good microbes get to work on them. You need to mix grass in with the top few inches of stuff to avoid that.

                             

                            Tom S.

                             

                            From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Tyra Rankin
                            Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:53 PM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                            Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

                             

                             

                            Jay – how interesting!  It sounds like the chemical breakdown process eats up metal tumblers.  The time frame you describe for vermicomposting is really attractive, as is indoor use.  I’m inclined to try the Worm Factory, despite its name.

                            Thank you.

                            Tyra

                             


                            From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Jay
                            Sent: Wednesday, August 04, 2010 10:31 PM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                            Subject: [hreg] Re: Composting Systems

                             

                             

                            It depends on how much space you have. If you have lots of outdoor space, you can't beat a regular compost heap. I tried several tumbler designs and had reasonable results. The tumbler is faster (6 months for quality compost instead of 12), but I am on my third tumbler and they are getting expensive. The metal parts keep rotting out, even the stainless steel ones. Maybe I should try aluminum :) The traditional heap definitely wins out as you compost more and more quantity, particularly homesteads or farms.

                            Recently I have come to like vermicomposting. That means composting with worms. I use the "Worm Factory 360". It can be used indoors with no smell, and is very fast compared with either tumber or heap methods. Compost now takes only 3 months. The 360 can handle about a pound a day. It's awesome for most urban and suburban people, but totally inadequate for homesteads or farms.

                            What I now use is the "Worm Factory 360" as the primary composter. I keep it indoors. Any excess waste beyond the 1 pound a day goes into the old tumbler. I will quit using my last tumbler once it breaks (I give it 2 more years, tops) and go back to a regular heap.

                            Good luck :)

                            --- In hreg@yahoogroups.com, "Tyra Rankin" <tyra@...> wrote:

                            >
                            > I know this group is Renewable Energy, not gardening, but many of you are
                            > serious gardeners. Are there composting systems you recommend buying for
                            > household kitchen waste?
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > Tyra
                            >

                          • Lynden Foley
                            Tyra, We use a container (small metal bucket, lid with charcoal filter) probably from Pottery Barn for our kitchen scraps and coffee grounds. Then we bury the
                            Message 13 of 14 , Aug 6, 2010
                            • 0 Attachment
                              Tyra,

                              We use a container (small metal bucket, lid with charcoal filter)
                              probably from Pottery Barn for our kitchen scraps and coffee grounds.
                              Then we bury the contents in the outside pile from grass clippings.

                              Lynden
                              >
                              > I know this group is Renewable Energy, not gardening, but many of you
                              > are serious gardeners. Are there composting systems you recommend
                              > buying for household kitchen waste?
                              >
                              > Tyra
                              >
                              >
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