Archive for the ‘Compost and Fertilyzer’ Category

Compost Bin Construction

January 13, 2017 9:30 pm
posted by Martin Boyle

Susan asks…

What is the best compost bin for home?

I want to know how to make a compost bin for my garden. What are the best materials to use for this task?

Martin Boyle answers:

Compost Bin Construction

First of all, Do not use any wooden pallets or any wood materials to make a compost bin. If you do use any wood materials to make your compost pit you will find within two weeks, you will have termites. The first real hot day, around mid July, you will have thousands of termites flying around in your yard. A homeowners night mare. If you don’t believe me, ask a professional termite controller.

Use a plastic or a metal garbage can. A 32 gallon can or larger, depending on the size of your garden. Cut out the bottom and cut holes around the side to vent it. Make sure your bin is away from the house. Compost bins will give off unsavory odors.

Place two inch or four inch thick bricks on the ground, you’ll need enough bricks to create a shape like the letter “U or V” on the ground . Set your can on the top of the bricks. You can shovel compost out of the open end of the bricks when your compost is ready.

Whatever you are composting always compost in layers, your vegetable and grass cuttings, dead plants, egg shells, and coffee grounds. Never meat or cooking oil. I mix my compost with chicken manure. Chicken manure is by far the best. Therefore, add approx. 2 cups of chicken manure every few inches. Keep the mixture lightly moist.

You will never buy soil again. A 1cu. Ft. Bag of chicken fertilizer will cost about $4. It is simple, but this bin will last you 10 years or more. I hope I helped.

For more ideas click on this link…. Make a Recycle Bin from a Trash Can

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Your Questions About Composter Worm Bin

September 14, 2012 10:25 am
posted by Martin Boyle

Nancy asks…

Directions on how to build a smaller plastic bin type composter using fishing worms and compostables?

I want to start composting on a small scale. I need directions on how to build an under the counter composter out of a small plastic bin using fishing worms and compostables…

Is there a website I can get this information from?

Martin Boyle answers:


up at the top of your screen, just type WORM BIN and you will get a number of sites.

I have a worm bin outside. We sent away for a box of worms when we set up our bin. We have so many worms. We only put certain kinds of stuff in the bin. No meat products, or oil, or table scraps. We only use fresh vegetable and fruit peels and pulp type stuff — stuff which is a by product of our kitchen prep work. Our worms love mango skins and pineapple. But I cut the pineapple into smaller pieces so it can be digested faster.

The table scraps and left over food we put in the city’s yard clipping recycling bin. Since they ask for the restaurant and home kitchen refuse, I think that the city probably uses the chemical composting method.

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Your Questions About Compost Tumbler

September 11, 2012 11:24 pm
posted by Martin Boyle

Ruth asks…

Compost tumbler?

Can bleached paper towels go into a compost tumbler? I’m trying to use the ones I have up to I can get some Seventh Generation ones.

Martin Boyle answers:

Sure, they decompose rapidly. You can also compost egg cartons, cereal boxes, coffee filters … Just make sure you have lots of “brown material’.

Laura asks…

Where can I get a compost tumbler in Hong Kong?

I am very interested in making compost. I have seen all the websites etc. I want to get a tumbler as it is contained but cannot find a website that ships internationally. Any ideas? or does anyone know how to make a tumbler at home?

Martin Boyle answers:

The new B&Q at Megabox will probably have them. If not, there are many garden centres in the northern New Territories.

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Your Questions About Compost

3:25 pm
posted by Martin Boyle

Donna asks…

Should compost bins be open to the air or closed to seal in heat?

Some people say you have to let the air get in and others say you have to close it up in order for the heat to build up which hastens decomposition. Who is right?
Also looking for ideas on
*how to do a home made compost bin.
*Steps in creating good compost.
*how to attract worms
*can I use chopped up twigs
*should I mix soil in with the compost to hasten decomposition.

Martin Boyle answers:

Great info here…


you can make this easy or more complicated…. A pile in the back corner is easy…. A tub, ‘machine’ , or other container is not as easy…. The whole deal is to do it!!….

There’s piles that are turned a couple times a week… Some daily in barrels… Some never get turned at all… Some are done with everything under the sun, some with only leaves and grass…. And yes, soil is a good kicker-upper!… The worms will find YOU…..

The magic recipe is greens plus browns plus water plus air…. That makes it cook!…

Read the site and you’ll be ready to do it!!!….

Susan asks…

How do I manage my compost materials with a compost tumbler?

We bought our first composter recently, the Urban Compost Tumbler. While reading through the directions, I had a bit of confusion. It recommends fully loading the composter and not adding additional compostable materials once you’ve completed the initial load. I’m hoping to find out what other folks who use compost tumbler do to manage their compost queue.
We only have one compost tumbler, and don’t plan on buying a second one. Is this a feasible approach? Do you just add new compost material to the tumbler frequently until you’re almost ready to harvest the compost? Do you keep it in a separate garbage can prior to putting it in the tumbler? Some other approach?
In terms of the actual compost material, we’re pretty set, and already have our first batch.
Your thoughts and input appreciated!

Martin Boyle answers:

I think I kind of see what the instructions are saying…some of the tumblers can make good, rich compost in about 6 weeks or so, so you need to keep your stuff in there that long. Then, you can start over with fresh compost. Not very practical, since, in the mean time, you are still making “trash” that needs to be put into the tumbler.

What I’ve always done with my compost is put the fresh stuff on top, then mixed it with the old stuff. And since I don’t use it right away, it rests in the heap becoming rich. You can even throw in some fresh earthworms to help the process move along.

Hope that helped?

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How to get your soil healthy

September 7, 2012 7:50 pm
posted by Martin Boyle

Daniel asks…

Help me, My Garden is a Pitiful Disaster, I am (thrifty) and don’t want to spend allot of money.?

I have been a gardener all of my life so far, I can remember planting seeds as a child in my own private patch, since then I have lived in upstate New York then moved to Phoenix Then to Salt Lake City. In all of these places I have grown spectacular Gardens with little or no problem, the native soil in Phoenix is Solid clay and stones, it was like concrete, however a little Gypsum and some compost and great garden. Now I am here in Cheyenne Wyoming, Last year I planted a garden on Prairie ground, This stuff had a layer of Native grasses, small cactus. (which I planted in a small Cactus Garden) To make a long story short I mixed in some compost and used some gypsum that was laced with a little sulfur as the gardeners here said that the soil was alkali here, Now I like to use compost on my gardens and natural methods however I have no compunction in buying some bug killer if I have an infestation and the natural things are not working. This year I had the worse garden I have ever had, the corn was spindly and didn’t develop before the frost, the tomatoes the cabbage the strawberries as well as the leeks all pouted, I added some miracle Grow fertilizer that perked them up a little but not in time, the upshot is that I got some squash, a few small potatoes a few radishes and beets and nothing else. What is going on, this problem is not restricted to any one plant, Please help as I have tilled up about one acre for next year, I am planning for some root crops, beans and another round of corn, I don’t want another disaster like last year, please help.

Martin Boyle answers:

Hello the first thing I would do is Test your soil pH by getting it analyzed and add what ever Fertilizer you need, to get your soil healthy If you don’t have rich soil you are just wasting your time.

Check this video out.

Good luck

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