setting up a compost system

Rather than wade through thousands of search results from google, can somone point me to a composting site? cheap is good, simple is better, self-maintaining is best and one that takes the garbage from the kitchen ou tto the compost site would be miraculous (hey, i can wish, can't i?)
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How far away is your nearest neighbor? If less than 1/2 mile, how visible (to the neighbors) is the spot where you want to make the compost pile?
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Your county, in an effort to reduce household kitchen trash and yard greenwaste, may offer a half price deal on a 3x3x3 foot compost bin, as did ours. Comes with a nice brochure on compost basics. I use mine mainly for kitchen waste, and interleave layers of brown dry waste, like fallen pine needles. A few years ago I added red wiggler worms to the mix, which hastens decomposition. The worm population exploded, and the pile is in perfect balance now. Takes over two years to fill the bin, before I have to distribute some of the product in the garden.
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Make pile Wait Use
How difficult is that?
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Snooze wrote:

heh, I could have swore that there was more to it, other posters mention aeration, non-diseaese and seed bearing stuff, and another mentions alternating with layers of brown material.
but hey, the one poster gave the simplest one. dig a trench, add compostable material, and bury it. I'll probably go this route.
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If time's not an issue, there's nothing more to it. There's more to it if you want to create usable compost, in a bin, in the shortest amount of time. If that's the goal, you'll need to go through the torture of using Google like other people. If you go to advanced search and limit the results to sites ending in .edu, it'll filter out the trash sites.
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From experience I found that it helps if you place the compost pile in an area where it doesn't get a lot of sun.
If there is too much sun, I found that the compost dries up fast, and if its dry - it won't breakdown.
However, you could prevent that by placing a hessian sack or plastic sheet over it- to prevent the water evaporation.
Also if you are using black compost bins in a very sunny spot, I found that - too much sun- and the worms will die... horribly. In Summer, the black bins overheat and the worms try and crawl out through the lid. Then they get stuck there and perish- leaving a slimy mess when u open it.
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Good advice. Another reason not to put the compost pile in the sun is to avoid the sun yourself when working the compost pile. _________________ John Henry Wheeler Washington, DC USDA Zone 7
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Google hint: try restricting the search to .edu or .gov domains... you'll typically find good how-tos from extension services that way. The exact search I'd use for a first pass would be "making compost" site:.edu
----------- The science and soforth behind composting: http://compost.css.cornell.edu/science.html
Pretty good beginners guide: http://gardening.wsu.edu/stewardship/compost/yardcomp/yardcomp.htm http://www.co.hennepin.mn.us/vgn/portal/internet/hcdet ailmaster/0,2300,1273_1712_100292546,00.html
imho, the easiest way of dealing with smallish quantities of non-seedbearing vegetable matter without plant diseases, is to simply dig a trench next to a row of something or other in the vegetable garden -- corn is a good "next to" crop for this. Throw waste vegetable matter into the trench, cover with a little soil. Move on to the next section of the trench when you've got the first section full and covered. When you run out of trench, dig a new one.
Hot composting, where you build a big pile and let it rot quickly, requires more work, as you need to keep it aerated. Compost tumblers or balls are probably the easy way out here, but I've also built piles incorporating pieces of perforated pvc pipe to get the air in to the pile with less work.
My usual method, however, is to get five pallets from the discard pile and arrange them into an E, standing up on edge... two three-sided bins separated by the center bar of the E. Build the pile in one bin. Every few days pitchfork it over to the other bin to aerate and mix. Next time, fork it back into the first bin, ad infinitum, till you've got finished compost. The only purpose the bins serve is to keep things a little tidier... you can just make a compost heap directly on the ground, uncontained.
Pitching compost to turn it was what I did before my back decided it liked less work. Now I mostly strip compost or slow compost -- perhaps not a choice for someone with a very small property, for whom worm composting or a compost tumbler is a better choice.
Rodale Book of Composting is probably the classic "every sort of composting" exposition.
Kay
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Tater wrote:

There is a Soil and Composting Forum at www.davesgarden.com . I think that forum may require you to be a paid member. I usually monitor the free Southwest forum so I'm not sure.
Carl
--
to reply, change ( .not) to ( .net)

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