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Thread: Composting - Dalek not producing

  1. #9
    burnie is offline Veggie gardener
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    This time of year my dalek is pretty low, but once I start harvesting, especially brassicas, then it starts to build in height, I try to turn my heap a couple of times a month and that seems to work. On my rotation plan only the bed with roots in next year gets my compost, the others get manure, so I always have enough.
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    Neighbour with a shovel nicking it ?
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    Quote Originally Posted by bario1 View Post
    Composting is a long game and in order to produce a lot, you need more than one composter and you need to go out of your way to find materials. Obviously your dalek is doing a great job, you just need to feed it more... fill it to the top, start another one, keep turning and topping both up over the season, and you'll have some nice compost next year. If you need a lot of compost now, you'll have to buy it - what's it for?
    Thanks Bario. I obviously need more raw material to feed the bins but for me, it defeats the object. I can't physically produce any more compostable waste from a family of four than we
    legitimately can find. I'm not willing to go and collect other people's waste to do it and even then, the yield looks very low anyway (look how many bins Cadders has!)

    Regards as always..........Rob
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  4. #12
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    I agree with turning the bin (or at least using an aerator) But not topping them up once full as you're always waiting for the last bit added to break down.

    Get as many free newspapers as you can to boost up the carbon - I usually grab half a dozen each time I go on the bus. Too many greens will reduce down to nothing.

    You could try growing more cover crops and green manure in empty beds over winter such as oats.
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  5. #13
    Chris11 is offline Banned
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    Thanks Jay-ell.
    I read somewhere a while back that newspaper inks are now safe for compost. I don't know why I haven't been putting more of my free newspaper in my two Daleks, but will do so now thanks to your reminder
    Have also got a small paper shredder. Have to see how quickly I can put newspapers through shredder as that would also speed up composting process.
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  6. #14
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    Remember to take the staples out of the news papers first - not good in either shredder or compost. I sometimes just sit there tearing the papers by hand during ad breaks when watching TV or when I've nothing else to do. Don't think my little shredder would manage the pile of papers.

    The inks are now made from soya, the printing industry put a lot of research into alternatives to oil based print due to rising prices and looked at renewable sources and (more importantly) ones that can be produced anywhere, and not reliant on the pricing whims of the oil producing countries.
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  7. #15
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    I haven't had much luck with mine, seems to be along the same lines - loads of material in = not much out. I wonder if I'm putting too much "green" material in and not enough "brown"

    Is this a common problem?
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  8. #16
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    Sound like you need more 'browns' to bulk it up. I add a lot of torn up corrugated cardboard - I have a load of broken up boxes stashed in the utility room and I just tear a couple of strips off and tear them up again into smaller bits and add them to my waste caddy every time I add some food waste. Really you want about 60% browns to 40% greens.
    He-Pep!

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