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Odourless Guerilla Basement Composting

Blog posts reflect the views of their authors.
Manure, straw, wood shavings, snow
Manure, straw, wood shavings, snow
Odourless Guerilla Basement Composting
The finished bin
The finished bin
The same bin as above after 6 weeks
The same bin as above after 6 weeks
Some carbon/nitrogen ratios from aginclassroom.org
Some carbon/nitrogen ratios from aginclassroom.org

About a month ago I bartered John Wimberly some garlic and aioli sauce for his chicken manure. I hope that by composting this litter I can actually get squash to produce a harvest at the as-yet washed-out soil of my community garden plot. John Wimberly is the point person for the movement to keep hens in the North End in the wake of the knowlege that there are no bylaw rulings in that district on agriculture.

I wanted a fast composting process and also to have my house benefit from the heat that would be generated. An odorless, fast and hot compost process ideally has a carbon to nitrogen ratio of 1 part nitrogen to 20 or 30 parts of carbon. Chicken manure is one of the highest sources of nitrogen available in a manure, so I added water (in the form of snow), and carbon in the form of straw and wood chips. Then I put the bin in my basement. There was a bit of a whiff for a couple days if you went right next to it but it didn't stink up my house or anything. After a week the system was odourless.

The level of the compost has gone down 6 inches as the straw and wood chips are absorbed in the compost process and become carbon dioxide. I anticipate this compost to be ready by the time early summer arrives.


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