Compost Bin Use

I’ve gotten some questions on how to use the compost bin.

Here are a few guidelines.

Put plant debris that is diseased in the trash, not the compost.

There are three sections in the compost bin. Plant material can be put in the two end sections. In time, the piles will decay enough and decrease in volume allowing both piles to be turned into the middle section.  About six months from now, that combined pile will be turned back into an end section as finished compost.

The goal of using both end sections is to turn more of our plant debris this fall into compost for next season.

What can go into the compost? A combination of greens and browns in layers.  We want greens such as garden debris, food scraps, grass clippings that haven’t been treated with herbicides. And browns such as dried leaves, straw, paper including newspaper but not colored sections, sawdust and wood chips.

The following can be added to the compost pile:

Garden waste, egg shells, fruit, vegetables, grass clippings, leaves, saw dust, straw, wood ash in moderation, manure from cows, horses, poultry and rabbits, wood chips.

The following should not be added to the compost pile:

Diseased plant materials, dog or cat waste, scraps or bones from chicken, fish or beef, fatty substances such as oils, peanut butter or milk products including butter, sour cream, cheese.

For more information on composting visit: www.gardening.cornell.edu/factsheets/orgmatter/index.html#paper

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