Composting for an urban environment

Just-Moxie

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So, this new year finds me in a whole different setting. Instead of 1 acre in the boonies, I am now in a suburban city environment with an HOA. I will still compost, but now see I need to come up with some sort of smaller hidden bin. A large planter perhaps? I have been looking online, to see what I could see. When the nurseries open in the spring, I can't wait to shop around and find something to use. Whatever I manage to locate, it cannot be a standard ugly pile...like the re-purposed pallets or fencing. Will be making this more of a challenge.
I was looking at some sort of willow type fencing, to make a circular style bin. Even those are being tough to locate. Hmmmm

I think I can hide one or two, in the 12'-18' deep flower garden late step mom had created. It goes the length of the property, covering the rock drainage ditch the subdivision had made. Dad won't be in on my design idea. He, even though he was born and raised in rural KS, in the 20's......is NOT a country boy. But I refuse to toss in the landfill anything that will create soil.

Soooooo...ideas?
 

Ridgerunner

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Have you considered barrel composters? In the country I didn't worry about attracting mice or other vermin, now that I am in suburbia it is more of a concern. I'm careful what I put in mine. With a barrel composter you can lock vermin out and maybe control moisture so it doesn't stink. I'm tempted to get or make a barrel composter so I can toss kitchen wastes in there.
 

flowerbug

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So, this new year finds me in a whole different setting. Instead of 1 acre in the boonies, I am now in a suburban city environment with an HOA. I will still compost, but now see I need to come up with some sort of smaller hidden bin. A large planter perhaps? I have been looking online, to see what I could see. When the nurseries open in the spring, I can't wait to shop around and find something to use. Whatever I manage to locate, it cannot be a standard ugly pile...like the re-purposed pallets or fencing. Will be making this more of a challenge.
I was looking at some sort of willow type fencing, to make a circular style bin. Even those are being tough to locate. Hmmmm

I think I can hide one or two, in the 12'-18' deep flower garden late step mom had created. It goes the length of the property, covering the rock drainage ditch the subdivision had made. Dad won't be in on my design idea. He, even though he was born and raised in rural KS, in the 20's......is NOT a country boy. But I refuse to toss in the landfill anything that will create soil.

Soooooo...ideas?

do you have a basement space that is easy to access? (i kind doubt @Ridgerunner has a basement at all where they are at)...

if so, worm compost, i love it. :)

you can worm compost outdoors too in a larger container, but the issues of animals or HOAs or whatever can make it not worth it. things will slow down in the winter months so you need extra space to consider that part of the cycle (inside this isn't as much an issue).
 

Ridgerunner

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No traditional basements, but in areas prone to flooding houses are often up on piers, high enough that people can easily walk underneath and store all kinds of things. The typical plantation design incorporated an area underneath like that. I visited one that used that space for a wine import business.

Mine is not like that, I'm not in an area that is likely to flood. An area like that could come in pretty handy, especially on a farm.
 

digitS'

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The barrel composter my brother was unhappy with, really seemed much too small to heat-up, for me. I only tried it once and was dissatisfied, not sure what DB's concern was but he is in the country with sheep and horse at the time.

Do you have soil where pit composting would not turn into something horrible when it rains?

Here in my 50' x 125' yard (I believe it is), my two bins are under wood decks. One deck sits outside the chicken house and has two sections. Outside the greenhouse door, the deck is larger and has 4 sections. These sections exist partly in my imagination -- there are no separations except by where and when I add material. It works.

In fact, it works very well. When I have composting in the distant gardens that also starts in a pit about 8" deep (Under the decks, the pits are about 12".). The material under the decks can only rise about 8" above the surrounding soil surface. Everything is covered with either garden soil or organic material that has been composting for a couple of months. No odor that amounts to anything. "Stealth composting," I call it.

Steve
 

Gardening with Rabbits

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I was going to post a composting question yesterday. I have 5 barrels of rabbit manure, straw, rabbit urine, some hay. I cannot turn piles and DH always took care of this. I was thinking of maybe covering to keep rain out and uncover when sunny and maybe each week or maybe every 2, just turn the barrels over and then use a fork or shovel and put it all back into the barrel. In the summer, I could add grass clippings maybe. It is not going to do anything right now except freeze, but when it warms up this might work???
 

ducks4you

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You will probably want to be careful with What goes into your compost living so close to your new neighbors. In the country we all have mice, and sometime, rats. In the city, I can guarantee Both rats and roaches.
I used to have 4 pallets tied together when I lived on 1/4 acre neighborhood lot and I filled it with only leaves every fall. Even NOW, I try to keep the used horse bedding some distance from my immediate neighbors, at least until it breaks down enough in April to smell sweet.
Have you considered getting a kitchen composter?
 

ducks4you

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I was going to post a composting question yesterday. I have 5 barrels of rabbit manure, straw, rabbit urine, some hay. I cannot turn piles and DH always took care of this. I was thinking of maybe covering to keep rain out and uncover when sunny and maybe each week or maybe every 2, just turn the barrels over and then use a fork or shovel and put it all back into the barrel. In the summer, I could add grass clippings maybe. It is not going to do anything right now except freeze, but when it warms up this might work???
I have 100x the compost from animals that you do. It will break down over the winter. I wouldn't bother covering it bc the winter snow/rain will help to break it down.
Once time a few years ago I tilled up when I had laid down used horse bedding some 5 months earlier. DH wondered what smelled so nice.
Horse manure, left alone, takes 4 months to break down.
Here is information about rabbit manure:
This year I am really going through my straw. I'm pretty sure that my piles are going to be the best compost I have ever had bc of this.
 

flowerbug

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I was going to post a composting question yesterday. I have 5 barrels of rabbit manure, straw, rabbit urine, some hay. I cannot turn piles and DH always took care of this. I was thinking of maybe covering to keep rain out and uncover when sunny and maybe each week or maybe every 2, just turn the barrels over and then use a fork or shovel and put it all back into the barrel. In the summer, I could add grass clippings maybe. It is not going to do anything right now except freeze, but when it warms up this might work???
if you can be ok holding it until nearer to spring time planting i would do that. if you cant the best way i would deal with it would be to have DS dig some trenches for you that you can bury it in. next spring those will be prime places to plant along (some plants i would put next to the trenches and other plants i would put right on top of them).

as rabbit manure seems pretty benign compared to many i'd put some manure worms or compost worms in those barrels right now. :) yes, they might freeze, but if the compost is rotting it might be warm enough in the center to keep them warm enough through the winter. add some water if it is too dry.
 

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