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Just Grow It

Brown vs Greens... The Compost Battle for Supremacy

Brown vs Greens... The Compost Battle for Supremacy

Composting is not magic.  Microorganisms break down the materials we put in the compost bin changing the chemical composition.  These billions of organisms in the compost bin rely on us for the necessary fuel to complete this natural phenomenon.  The fuel they rely upon us to deliver can be classified as Browns or Greens.

Browns are high in carbon and Greens are high in nitrogen. Carbon is the principal energy source for the microorganisms.  Bacteria use Nitrogen as the critical component when breaking down heir food. 

Optimal growth occurs when we supply the proper ratio between browns and greens or carbon and nitrogen.  Excessive levels of carbon and the decomposition process moves slower than a snail.  Excessive nitrogen leads to rapid microbial growth that cannot be sustained.  You will know if you have excess nitrogen from the smell,  you will smell ammonia.  I aim for a ration of 3:1, 3 parts carbon to 1 part nitrogens. 

Here is a list of Common compostable materials

Carbons- Brown

·       Brown leaves

·       Straw

·       Hay

·       Dead plants and flowers

·       Wood chips

·       Tree bark

·       Cardboard

·       Pine needles

Nitrogens- Green

·       Kitchen scraps

·       Tea bags and loose tea

·       Coffee grounds

·       Grass clippings

·       Manures

Manures

A note about manures- manures and animal beddings are great additions to the compost pile.  The manure from herbivores is exceptionally high in nitrogen.  No need to go crazy with these manures, a little amount will have a significant impact on your piles. The highest nitrogen content from domestic animals comes from pigs, sheep, chicken, horse, rabbit, goat and cows. 

Do not add dog or cat manure to your compost pile.  These types of manure can contain harmful pathogens.  Even though the compost pile heats up enough to decompose materials and kill harmful bacteria, there is no guarantee that it will reach or sustain the necessary temperature needed to kill these pathogens.

 Composting is not magic.  Microorganisms break down the materials we put in the compost bin changing the chemical composition.  These billions of organisms in the compost bin rely on us for the necessary fuel to complete this natural phenomenon.  The fuel they rely upon us to deliver can be classified as Browns or Greens. Browns are high in carbon and Greens are high in nitrogen. Carbon is the principal energy source for the microorganisms.  Bacteria use Nitrogen as the critical component when breaking down heir food. 

Optimal growth occurs when we supply the proper ratio between browns and greens or carbon and nitrogen.  Excessive levels of carbon and the decomposition process moves slower than a snail.  Excessive nitrogen leads to rapid microbial growth that cannot be sustained.  You will know if you have excess nitrogen from the smell,  you will smell ammonia.  I aim for a ration of 3:1, 3 parts carbon to 1 part nitrogens. 

Here is a list of Common Compostable materials

Carbons- Brown

·       Brown Leaves

·       Straw

·       Hay

·       Dead Plants and flowers

·       Woodchips

·       Tree Bark

·       Cardboard

·       Pine needles

Nitrogens- Green

·       Kitchen Scraps

·       Tea bags and loose tea

·       Coffee Grounds

·       Grass Clippings

·       Manures

Manures

A not about manures.  Manures and animal beddings are great additions to the compost pile.  The manure from herbivores is exceptionally high in nitrogen.  No need to go crazy with these manures, a little amount will have a significant impact on your piles. The highest nitrogen content from domestic animals comes from Pigs, sheep, chicken, horse, rabbit, goat and cows. 

Do not add dog or cat manure to your compost pile.  These types of manure can contain harmful pathogens.  Even though the compost pile heats up enough to decompose materials and kill harmful bacteria, there is no guarantee that it will reach or sustain the necessary temperature needed to kill these pathogens.

 

The Benefits of Composting

The Benefits of Composting

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Watermelon Drinks