Can anyone tell us what do you use to start a compost bed? We are trying to start a compost but are not sure what to put in it. Thanks in advance for all your help.
Hardiness Zone: 9a
Use any organic product. That means veggies, leaves, grass, orange peels, banana skins, etc. That also means no fats, oils, grease, meat products. The pile should also be somewhat damp and turned periodically. (04/02/2009)
I started my compost pile with cheap potting soil. I add vegetable scraps, grass clippings, dead leaves, used coffee grounds, used tea bags, fruit peelings, and egg shells. Do not use fish or meat in the compost pile. I also bought a compost accelerator from Lowe's. It is a granule substance. Water the pile and turn it on a regular basis. I have mine in a plastic tub. Make holes in whatever you use so the water can drain out and the compost can get air.
Hope this helps. ~Janette~ (04/05/2009)
I cold compost, which means that I just keep adding things, I do not worry what they are, and I do not turn my pile. It takes longer for the stuff to break down, but is less work. I move the pile each spring, taking and using the compost from the bottom and starting a new pile with what hasn't finished decomposing. Just google it, and you will find out all the ins and outs of composting. (04/05/2009)
All of the above, plus grass clippings and leaves. A lot of articles tell you to add shredded newspaper, black and white, not colored.
Starbucks gives away coffee grounds, they are GREAT in compost.
I cold compost too, but you'll get results much faster if you cut it all into small pieces. I find this is just too much trouble, but it is a good idea.
I've even read that you can put your food scraps in a blender with water and dump it right on the garden. Anybody try that? I think it would work if it was blended so well that animals wouldn't be interested in it. Again, more trouble so I don't do it. (04/05/2009)
You can go to organicgardening.com. I have been doing organic for years. This is one of my go to sites for all my gardening. (04/06/2009)
Do a search on Thrifty Fun and you will find lots more information. Anything organic goes, no fats or anything from a carnivore. Egg shells ground up are good too. Coffee grounds are good, but too many can make your compost acidic. Instead of greens and browns think of wets and drys and try to layer them alternately.
I learned a lot by googling a search for how to make compost. It isn't hard and it is a great way to recycle. (04/06/2009)
If you should live near the ocean, seaweed is another excellent additive to the compost pile. I have found through trial and error that keeping the pile or bin moist is really important, it seems to speed up the process. I agree, Starbucks was a great source last fall for the coffee grounds. They will save them and bag them for you. Just ask the day before. (04/10/2009)
I have a compost bin that I got for free off of Freecycle.org and I put all food scraps, stale breads, yard cuttings, dryer lint, hair from my brushes, napkins and paper towels (I don't use many) and coffee grinds in. I do put small amounts of black and white newspaper in (no colored). The only items I have read that you are NOT to put in the compost are proteins (meat) and animal feces. Also, if you wind up with a stinky compost the newspaper does help with that. (04/10/2009)
Thanks to everyone who wrote in and gave us their advice on our compost pile. We really appreciate all the helpful information. We have started it and so far it is doing good. I know it will take awhile before we can use it. (04/10/2009)
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