Composting and a bad back


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Am I able to make good compost by selecting an area to bury kitchen, lawn and leaf scraps without turning it over? I have two plots: one active and one resting until needed.
Thank you.
 
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Am I able to make good compost by selecting an area to bury kitchen, lawn and leaf scraps without turning it over? I have two plots: one active and one resting until needed.
Thank you.
Sure, and consider making a depression in the pile to collect all rain water possible.
I have a wire cage about 2 ft. diameter I dump kitchen veg waste in and it sets in the same place for 1 year which turns the soil black and that's where I plant a tomato plant. The cage is moved to a new location close by in preparation for a plant the following year with some kitchen waste still clinging in the wire cage. Composting just can't get any simpler than that.
 
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I never turn compost, I just bury and forget. My whole yard is a compost pile, because I'm collecting yard waste this time of year, every year. My yard is like a forest floor and I just throw my kitchen waste under the mulch.
 
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Hot composting is overrated.
Hot composting is somewhat effective against fungal pathogens but cannot be relied on to eliminate them. Trichoderma is a fungus that feeds on harmful fungi and the best way to control harmful fungi is to have an overabundance of this beneficial fungi. And the best way to grow Trichoderma is to incorporate whole ground cornmeal into your compost pile and place it around the base of your plants. Whole Ground Cornmeal or horticultural cornmeal is the favorite growing medium of this fungi. All soils already have Trichoderma in them but many times not enough to control all of the harmful fungi so adding cornmeal will always be beneficial.
 
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I don't turn piles. I make far too much compost in a very small area for that. I can't use mechanized means to turn piles and have too much to do it manually. So...I use time. If you layer them well they will still hot compost for a while and then it just takes time for the rest of the breakdown. My browns are mainly 300+ large paper leaf bags of leaves so that gives you an idea of volume. I also use leaves to make leaf mold which is another great product for your garden.

Even if you could cook off all the harmful fungi, they're still depositing spores on all surfaces in your garden through aerial transmission alone. The minute temps drop on heated media they become available to anything trying to colonize. I like hot composting for the reduction in processing time for compost but I don't worry about the rest. I still get piles at 160F in the middle of winter. Again, if I turned them, they would process far more quickly. It's just too much work given my circumstance. I also trench and/or layer compost directly into beds all year.
 
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I never turn compost, I just bury and forget. My whole yard is a compost pile, because I'm collecting yard waste this time of year, every year. My yard is like a forest floor and I just throw my kitchen waste under the mulch.
Fantastic!
 
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It just won't be heat sterilized if that becomes an issue.
I use a black plastic compost bin for anything I want to get hot, stand it in the sun and leave a year, no need to turn. Leaves, non invasive weeds, soft prunings, lawn mowings, mowed up hedge cuttings and stuff like that I just dump in a slatted bin. I don't turn, if there are bits around the edges that didn't rot fully when I break it open I either dump them back in the new bin as 'starter' of bury them where I am going to plant runner beans
 
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In truth, mulching and cold composting completely intergrade with each other.
If there are out-of-the-way places in the back of beds or where you can mulch heavily, even letting it mound up, why not do so. Another great place to put added organic matter is on your garden paths. Think of them as low linear compost piles you can walk and the nutrients don't have to travel very far to benefit nearby bed. You will usually lean towards woody and dry organic matter, and that is fine. One doesn't always want decomposition to be as fast as possible, sometimes quite the opposite actually.
 
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When we had a much smaller garden I used to dig a trench across the Veg patch and fill it with biodegradable material. When it was full I turned over the soil from next to it and then filled that trench and so on across the whole area. Never had any bother with nasty stuff or things not breaking down. The soil became really fertile and friable over the years.
 
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When we had a much smaller garden I used to dig a trench across the Veg patch and fill it with biodegradable material. When it was full I turned over the soil from next to it and then filled that trench and so on across the whole area. Never had any bother with nasty stuff or things not breaking down. The soil became really fertile and friable over the years.
An excellent way of going on, but I fear digging trenches is not for someone with a bad back. It occurs to me that another way I have coped with material that needed to get hot was to take a plastic bag I had bought potting compost in and turn it inside out, the inside is usually black plastic and, again, it will get very warm if it is stood somewhere the sun can get on it for a summer.
 

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