Cover Material (Dirt?)

The International Compost Sanitation Forum and Message Board: General Composting Issues: Cover Material (Dirt?)
Author: Rman (Rman)
Wednesday, July 30, 2014 - 11:30 pm
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How about a five gallon pail to hold the raw material and a wipper snipper? That might be a regional name for an electric or gas plastic line grass cutter used for trimming around rocks, trees etc. A friend used that system to separate grain from stalks.

Author: Joe (Joe)
Tuesday, June 11, 2013 - 10:05 am
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Some people pulverize leaves with a gas-powered push lawn mower.

Author: Ecointerest (Ecointerest)
Thursday, June 06, 2013 - 3:17 am
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Is that another way of playing Leaf Frog?

Author: Test2 (Test2)
Tuesday, June 04, 2013 - 12:33 am
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another method _ put some leaves in a plastic bag and jump on them .

Author: Demeter (Demeter)
Friday, May 31, 2013 - 12:25 am
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To pulverize leaves, I have found the easiest thing is a leaf vacuum-shredder. I know it takes power, but it really works. The leaves have to be dry.

Author: Ecointerest (Ecointerest)
Thursday, May 30, 2013 - 12:37 am
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I would not let your wife get her hands on some of that smother material, Billy, she might use it on you as a composting experiment, then turn Thermophilic.

Author: Billy_thr_krik (Billy_thr_krik)
Wednesday, May 29, 2013 - 2:22 pm
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Been researching about pulverising leaves too... Did some with the wife's blender 'till blue smoke started to appear... Not eco friendly...Not wife friendly either..scrub that idea. Did some with gas guzzlin lawn mower... Result a bit coarse for cover material...good for the pile though. Sun dried short clipped lawn grass seems to be the best so far... Still researching. Tried drying used coffee grinds but not that easy. Tend to go mouldy and not dry thoroughly. Trying a mixture of pulverised cardboard paper plus coffee grinds plus pulverised leaves to make a sort of tray like thing but have to rake up courage wifes blender again!

Author: Ecointerest (Ecointerest)
Wednesday, May 29, 2013 - 10:59 am
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Interesting.
How about using something like a drum, plastic or metal, filled with water with a tight fitting stopper.
Roll dried leaves so they crumble up, then sweep into a storage receptacle.

Author: Test2 (Test2)
Tuesday, May 28, 2013 - 7:02 pm
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@econinterest I think the complete book of composting by organic gardening and J. Rodale had somebody write in with a design to pulverize leaves as follows.

square off end of a broom pole and bolt on 2 bent license plates. Sharpen edges of the plates.

Put leaves in carboard box or maybe a pail and pulverize the leaves.

Author: Ecointerest (Ecointerest)
Tuesday, May 28, 2013 - 3:08 pm
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For some time now it has been in my mind to devise a way of pulverizing dried leaves so they can be stored in bulk and used as cover material in the bucket. I have not been able to apply the time to this yet in practice. Anyone got some ideas that might work?

Author: Joe (Joe)
Saturday, May 04, 2013 - 11:57 am
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Leaves alone without the dirt would be fine.

Author: Joe (Joe)
Saturday, May 04, 2013 - 11:57 am
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Dirt was the original cover material in Moules Earth Closet (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Moule). That was before microbiology had become very established. We now know that some intestinal parasites require time in the soil as part of their life cycle (roundworms, for example), so soil is not a suitable cover material. It does not aid the composting process and that is what we are now trying to achieve. Hot composting kills the parasites. Use carbon-based cover materials.

Author: Illdill (Illdill)
Thursday, May 02, 2013 - 4:37 pm
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I know it would be fine to use dirt as a cover material as that is what would happen in nature. My only concern is that the dirt may not aid the compost process as much as sawdust. We also produce a lot of leaf litter from our place so I was wondering what a good ratio of dirt to leaf litter would be to sufficiently cover as well as assist in the composting process. Or would dirt be sufficient on it's own? We are also putting our food and other organic waste in the compost as well. Thanks!

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