Step 6: 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.
<p>pretty cool stuff :-)</p>
I like your style. You should be in charge of a lot of stuff.
My only concern with paint is if any chemicals would leech off the paint into your compost. I'm not sure if that would happen or not, though, so maybe I'm just worrying about nothing...<br />
My landlord wants us to use a compost bin and not just heap the compost in the corner of the backyard. But compost bins are not cheap and I'm not especially handy. This is the best and easiest way to make a compost bin I've ever seen...THANK YOU! :-)
Oh, step 3, image 3 - <em>haunted drill!</em><br/>
Somebody's up just a little too early... :-P Interesting shape for a composter tho...
Not early, late - I'm in the UK, hours behind California.
Ah, I thought that the time stamp was for the posters local time, not the time in California...learn something new every day. Let's see, I'm in Ohio, which is 4 hours ahead of California and my friend in England is 5 hrs ahead of me...soo you're 9 hrs ahead of California meaning it was midday at the time of the post (if my numbers are right, about 1:40p) meaning the kookiness of the comment probably wasn't from sleep deprivation. Crazy Brits! Just kidding of course... Aside from my pastime of poking fun at the British (all in good fun of course!), I'm working on an instructable for a kite made in grade school awhile that I believe worked by the magnus effect that I surprisingly haven't spotted anywhere on the interweb highway (if I wasn't so lazy I'd have it done) and while that is completely off topic (apologies to the author) you're name is, after all, Kiteman so I thought you may be interested. Crap, now that I've told you about it, I need to finish it...
Magnus effect? That'll need a high wind.
I imagine old pallets would work well for this. They are about the right size. You would benefit from the additional air circulation. Critters could be a problem but you could surround with chicken wire. However, there would be no need to cut or drill holes. My mother usually just made a mound directly on the ground without any sort of covering. It worked like a charm. I can still remember the steam that rose from it in the winter.
I need another compost bin. Maybe I'll try this, although my technique seems to be a lot simpler. I just take a big plastic garbage can with a few holes drilled in the bottom and fill it up with food scraps until it's filled to the top. When it's full, I cover the food scraps with a few bags of free used coffee grinds from starbucks and then plant some sort of plant in the grinds. When I harvest whatever I'm growing, the compost is normally nice good dirt by then...
Smart idea, it looks very cool, and looks very easy to do, great job.
I would just switch the rope to a hemp or natural rope.<br/>Also the paint to an oil.<br/>Just to make it 100% decomposable(A.K.A. Plastic rope=bad)<br/>
i like your reason for doing this and it looks like its really easy :-) good job and very easy to understand!

About This Instructable




Bio: Tim Anderson is the author of the "Heirloom Technology" column in Make Magazine. He is co-founder of www.zcorp.com, manufacturers of "3D Printer" output ... More »
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