I have three compost bins. I thought that I'd try that instead of
always burning my leaves. The piles were warm for a while but now
they are stone cold. I have shredded the leaves but I have no green
stuff to add to the piles. Can I add something else to get it going?
I have acess to lots of coffee grounds, would that help? There are
plenty of worms in there. Also, where I had to put them was near a
white pine tree so a fair amount of needles are in the mix. Could
this be a problem? TIA
Coffee grounds (without filters) are a 'green' (nitrogen source) in
Other possibilities: fresh grass clippings, blood meal, rabbit food,
alfalfa hay or pellets -- even straight urea -- can be used to add nitrogen
and kick up composting process.
Worms are good. Pine needles will compost (eventually).
I can send you information on hot, batch composting if you email.
See sig for correction.
Pat K. ('someplace.net' is comcast)
Any technology distinguishable from magic is insufficiently advanced.
Leaves, by themselves, don't contain enough nitrogen to keep a compost heap
going. The bacteria which produce the "heat" require nitrogen to feed on.
If you don't have a ready source of high nitrogen material available (grass
clippings, manure, etc.) you can just mix in store bought fertilizer.
Coffee grounds are high in nitrogen, so if you can get enough of them by all
means mix it in the pile. It is possible to get too much nitrogen. If the
pile develops an ammonia smell, you have too much nitrogen or it is not
mixed in well enough. Use caution if you use table scraps, because it
It's also best to keep the pile roughly 3 ft high by 3 ft wide and as long
as you need. Keep the pile moist (but not soaking wet), and turn it
periodically to speed up the process. If you've done these two things and
the pile is not staying warm, you need to add more nitrogen.
Thanks for all the great advise. I thought that I could just use
nitrogen fertizer but I wasn't sure. I'll start using some coffee
also (even though I hate the smell). I mulch my grass and so does
everyone around me so I have no help there. Hopefully I'll get these
piles knocked down by the time fall gets here for a re-load. Thanks
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