The role(s) of cover material

The International Compost Sanitation Forum and Message Board: General Composting Issues: The role(s) of cover material
Author: Joe Jenkins (Joe)
Sunday, November 23, 2008 - 12:03 pm
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The cover material keeps away flies as well as blocking odor. It also insulates the pile, like a blanket. You should use cover materials with any compost pile for flies and odor purposes. You should also include all your food materials with your humanure compost, rather than composting them in a separate pile.

Author: Tassiejohn (Tassiejohn)
Saturday, November 22, 2008 - 9:32 pm
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In my experience cover material seems to help keep heat in as well as blocking odour and deterring birds and other critters. Also it means all the food scraps (or humanure) are kept in the moist warm centre of the pile and break down better. So it would be a benefit for a non humanure pile too.

Also, as far as question 1) goes the cover material you fork out of the way so you can add humanure to the centre of the pile forms a bit of a layer of straw / leaves / weeds / whatever around the outside of the bin, which might help make sure the fresher humanure generally stays in the hot part of the pile.

Cheers,

John

(Message edited by tassiejohn on November 22, 2008)

Author: Al Chase (Uncleal)
Friday, November 21, 2008 - 7:05 pm
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. Does cover material in the outdoor bin serve any purpose other than blocking odor?
. To restate that question in two different ways:
. 1) If hypothetically I had a humanure bin out in the middle of nowhere and gone, and odor was not an issue, would there be any benefit to covering it with cover material?
. 2) I in reality have a small compost bin going which is intentionally non-humanure so that I'll have some useable finished compost before the end of the two year fill-and-let-stand period for humanure compost. Is there any benefit to using cover material on such a non-humanure compost bin?

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