Step 6: Compost Away!

Picture of Compost Away!
I put an oyster mushroom starter in my composter to help break down hydrocarbons and other chemicals. There are a lot of such chemicals spilled here on the base from fueling and maintaining aircraft. JuniorLee gave me the mushroom starter from a project she worked on in New Orleans after the disaster.

Your compost needs air and water to work properly. It doesn't need to be soggy, but make sure your compost doesn't dry out. It will get hot from decomposition and that will tend to dry it out. Soapy water or rainwater is fine.

If you want to keep animals out of your compost put a weighted board or chickenwire over the top. If they're very motivated you may need to nail chickenwire around it and set it on chickenwire. Depending on what the animals are you might not care. Their guts will break down the plant matter faster than anything else.

If you want to compost human manure, read the book Humanure Handbook. You'll want at least two composters so you can let one sit inactive for several months after the last addition before dumping and spreading it on your garden.