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PostPosted: Sat Aug 12, 2006 8:52 am 
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Joined: Sun May 07, 2006 8:25 am
Posts: 147
Location: Clute,TEXAS
I have been composting for about 4 months now. I have read and understand that most of you recommend up to 1 year for a good compost and that it should reach, in cycles, up to 160 degrees for a good session to kill the weeds, etc.

I try to keep my compost moist the best I can but even leaving it a bit dry, in all of this Texas heat, it still does its job pretty well.

My compost pile heats up to HIGH degrees of heat! So hot that I cannot believe it has not caught fire! I mean you have to stand back when turning it!

So, my question is, is there a possible TOO hot for a compost pile or is it the hotter the better? I am guessing that at this rate my compost pile works quicker also although I have yet to see it completely cool down for any period of time.

Any thoughts are appreciated. Thanks.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 12, 2006 9:09 am 
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Joined: Sun May 07, 2006 8:25 am
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Location: Clute,TEXAS
Well, I have gone way back in the composting forum and found some replies to very similar questions but no real definitive, exact answers.

Also, I have added some liquid molasses and about a cup of liquidized cow manure to the pile about a month ago.

The pile smells for about a day and then the smell goes away.

One good thing, the ants that used to like to spend time building homes around the pile, they cannot stand it any longer and have left for fear of burning up. :wink:


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 12, 2006 10:24 am 
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Location: Odenville,Alabama
It is NOT an absolute concrete rule that everybody has to wait 12 months to make compost. I personally would never wait that long!

It all depends on how you compost, and what you compost.

If you are a passive composter and don't believe in turning it frequently, it could take less than a year.

If you are an active composter, and use conservative greens and browns in your mixture, you can make a mature compost in 1-2 months. I do it all the time on my no-till farm and for my customers. Using biostimulants like dry molasses will speed it up even faster.

If you use high protein stuff like fish scraps or high ammonia stuff like strong raw animal manures, you might need 6+ months to get it aerobic and safe enough for your purposes. But even that could be too long, based on how you aerate it and moisturize it.

No matter how long it takes, if its dark, crumbly, not warm, not smelly, and mostly homogenous, its done! Start using it.

Happy Gardening!

_________________
The entire Kingdom of God can be totally explained as an Organic Garden (Mark 4:26)
William Cureton


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 12, 2006 1:16 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 07, 2006 8:25 am
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Location: Clute,TEXAS
Thanks Captain! :D

I will just have to be patient and wait until it cools then.

It already looks good and feels right but I guess it just needs to go through all of heat cycles.

When I am sure that it is finished, I look forward to using it. :lol:


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