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Re: Soil Re: [pfaf] About wineberry-rubus

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  • david.keltie@gmail.com
    Better still don t compost.! Return all organic matter to the soil as mulch.. David On 6/18/09, matthew@b-and-t-world-seeds.com
    Message 1 of 3 , Jun 19, 2009
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      Better still don't compost.! Return all organic matter to the soil as mulch..

      On 6/18/09, matthew@...
      <matthew@...> wrote:
      > Hi Frank,
      > Yes, usually compost needs air, warmth, and humidity.
      > If you started your compost bin in the winter, it may have been too cold for
      > the composting processes to get started, then the materials got compacted,
      > dry and airless as soil and more compost were addded on top. (There are
      > probably no holes in the sides of your plastic drum, to let air in ? Could
      > water get in to keep the humidity up ?)
      > Reminds me of "Archeological" digs in landfill sites, because of the
      > constant temperature, lack of air and little water, deep in landfill sites,
      > organic materials are often preserved in perfect condition, more or less
      > indefinitely; 50 year old sandwiches still perfectly preserved (for
      > example).
      > What I don't understand, with your bins, is that the bottom 2' to 2' 6" was
      > the top couple of feet at some time, why didn't it compost then ?
      > It is a good idea to have a little live compost already at the bottom of the
      > bin. Don't add inert dirt on top of the compost, this will compact the
      > organic materials and will probably not add anything useful.
      > There are different worms at different depths of soil, 8" may be too deep
      > for surface worms, and probably the soil under your bin is compacted, which
      > worms don't like.
      > Compost prefers a good mix of dry, and green, vegetable materials, 2 or 3%
      > vegetarian, or omnivorous shit and potash or lime (alkaline material) also
      > helps.
      > The pieces to be composted should not be too large (logs, whole apples will
      > compost much better as sawdust and pulp) and should be mixed to get the
      > bio-chemical processes working.
      > Fungi are very good at decomposing organic materials and mushroom kits are
      > available that will help decompose your organic materials, provide edible
      > mushrooms and help build symbiotic soil communities to improve mineral
      > uptake by your plants.
      > Real aerobic composting gets too hot for worms, and should get hot enough to
      > kill weed seeds and some soil pathogens.
      > I expect there are some answers to your question here - there is good
      > composting information for most climates spread about the web.
      > For larger gardens, 2 or 3 plastic drums with lids can make excellent
      > compost very quickly, put some active compost in the bin and cover with a
      > good mix of shredded compost materials, leave a week or so then roll the bin
      > around, to mix everything up ( don't fill the bin, so it becomes unmoveable)
      > once you get a system like this working, you can compost most garden waste
      > in 3 or 4 weeks - always leave some compost in the bin to start the next
      > batch. Cycle the bins so fresh material goes in one bin while another is
      > sitting around composting.
      > Matt
      > ----- Original Message -----
      > From: frank_bowman@...
      > To: pfaf@yahoogroups.com
      > Sent: 6/18/09 1:14 PM
      > Subject: Soil Re: [pfaf] About wineberry-rubus
      > Hello,
      > This is a lazy question, and I am using this knowledgeable group to find it
      > out if anyone knows. It may be perfectly obvious and simple.but I was
      > reminded by this last email about soil.
      > Two weeks ago, I saw and discovered in one of my compost bins which is a 2
      > ft wide by 4 ft high plastic 45 gal drum, hasnt composted much below about
      > 1.5 to 2 ft. The stuff on top is great well broken down into rich compost,
      > but below that level, its taking its time, going very slowwwwwwwwww, and
      > will take a lot longer.
      > The way I do this compost is just as if the waste was put in the ground, the
      > way compost does what it does naturally. the bottom of the drum has holes
      > in it to let any worms in, and the drum is buried about 6-8", so it is
      > connected into the ground. Every time I put kitchen waste in, I put a
      > covering of soil on top, and so it goes till it reaches the top, then a few
      > months later, quite soon, its all turned to compost, except as the penny
      > dropped (Ive been doing it for quite a few years, I'm a bit slow) not very
      > fast if at all below 1.5 - 2 ft.
      > Someone suggested what I think is correct, that there is too little oxygen
      > at that depth, and as the soil is living, the bugs and microbes, and worms
      > just dont go there.
      > That made me think. Mm, I wonder if that is the case with all soil. That
      > the covering of the living material, the soil of life, is only 1.5 to 2 ft
      > deep or a bit more, all over the earth.
      > If it is, going from the email below, the concern about living soil loss,
      > may not be as bad as we may believe it to be, as the depth that is needed
      > can be quicker renewed given that supplies of water, are needed to bring
      > life into it. If supplies and using swales etc, are available in areas
      > where there has been a lot of soil loss.
      > Just a question and a thought. Frank
      > ----- Original Message -----
      > From: matthew@...
      > To: pfaf@yahoogroups.com
      > Sent: Thursday, June 18, 2009 5:14 PM
      > Subject: Re: [pfaf] About wineberry-rubus
      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      > ------------------------------------
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