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Question: How Do You Compost? (Please Comment!)



Dear Readers,

Help me out. I really want to compost. I feel guilt every time I toss watermelon rinds and carrot peelings in the trash. But I'm having trouble jumping in and trying it. Here are my issues:
  • There are multiple methods. Which one is the best for me? Note that I have actually ruled out worms because a couple of my friends tried that method and it seemed like a lot of work.
  • If it takes too much time, I will fail. I know, because I watched two tomato plants die over the summer simply because I didn't water them. (In case you are concerned, my husband is in charge of watering our new tree.)
  • I have a toddler. A crazy, gets-into-everything, I-cannot-control-her toddler. I need to be able to let her roam somewhat unsupervised in the backyard or I will lose my mind. We are also hoping to get a dog. I cannot have an amorphous pile of compost that my toddler or future dog will get into.
  • I'm scared of attracting vermin. I've had ants, cockroaches, fruit flies, and rats. There are also plenty of stray cats and dogs in my neighborhood that I would like to stay off my property.
  • I am completely willing to drop $100 to $200 on a compost bin if it will solve all my problems and make all my composting dreams come true. But I'm scared I'll buy a bin, and it won't work all that well, or won't make composting easy-peasy enough, and then I won't use it, and then I'll have a big hunk of plastic in my backyard and a lot of eco-guilt.

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6 comments:

  1. My best compost comes from using a black trash can in which I've drilled holes! No kids or dogs or vermin ever got into it and it decomposed quickly! This post of mine may help: http://souliciouslife.com/2012/06/18/joining-the-compost-revolution-easier-than-you-thought/ Good luck!

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    1. I'm leaning towards your method, Kim. Two bins: fill one up and let it sit while I fill up the other one. I want to see if my city sells bins at a discount.

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  2. Hi Betsy,
    I've been down this road and wrote about my various troubles with composting, as well as the one composter that has finally worked for us--the link is here: http://www.joyfullygreen.com/2013/03/a-good-composter-is-hard-to-find-but-we-found-it.html. I highly recommend this model--still no troubles with it and turns out very nice compost. We have raccoons and black bears where we live--they can't get into it. Good luck!
    Joy

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    1. Looks very sturdy. Thanks for the recommendation.

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  3. We make a lot of compost both in the garden and at the allotment. At the allotment we have big open wooden ones. In the garden the bins are black plastic with a lid and a little panel at the base where you scoop out the compost. This type is probaby safer and no animals can get into it. We keep it well away from the house at the top of the garden. All our kitchen peelings and garden waste, grass cuttings go into it as well as newspaper and cardboard, but no perennial weeds. It probably takes about a year to compost down, but once you've got one on the go you've always got some compost in there

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Margaret! I am planning to keep my bin far from my home at the back edge of our backyard, just in case.

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