weird composting materials

Tips and tools for composting

Make your own compost! Composting is not only a way to "go green" and save the
environment, it will also save you money on fertilizers.

Why should preppers compost?
There are three main reasons to get started in composting:

#1: Composting is good for the environment.
When you decide to compost you're taking a stand against chemical fertilizers.
These fertilizers artificially add nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium. Made up of
raw chemicals from the factory, sometimes chemical fertilizers burn plants or even
kill them. Chemical fertilizers also release gas and pollutants into the environment.
If everyone composted, we'd not need to worry about this.

#2: Composting reduces landfill waste.
Did you know that about a third of landfill waste is stuff that you could have
composted? In recycling kitchen and yard waste, you divert from the landfills and
put it to good use.

#3: Composting is good for your plants.
It may seem obvious that composting conditions your soil with nutrients, but this
also helps retain moisture in the soil which is vital for plant health. Composting also
helps ward off plant disease with rich aerated soil thanks to the handiwork of
microorganisms. It's nature's circle of life working in your own backyard.

Now that you're on board to the benefits of composting, check out the kinds of
things you can compost, and how to compost...

How to get your compost pile going:

Weird Composting Materials
Coffee grounds, eggshells, and orange peels are among prepper favorites for
composting, but what about the contents of your vacuum bag?

Here's a weird list of fodder for the prepper's compost bin:
  1. Aquarium tank water
  2. Can waters and juice (the stuff you strain)
  3. Cardboard from cereal, crackers, ice cream containers, pizza boxes -- you
    name it (as long as it is unwaxed).
  4. Chewing gum
  5. Coffee filters - use them at the bottom of your composting pot to help keep
    your composting bin a little more clean.
  6. Cotton balls
  7. Dust bunnies and dryer lint
  8. Dog and cat hair
  9. Hair from your hairbrushes, electric razor trimmings
  10. Facial tissues
  11. Old spices (they loose flavor)
  12. Olive pits
  13. Leftover poporn kernals
  14. Matches - after they are lit and used
  15. Natural nail clippings (polish-free)
  16. Nut shells
  17. Paper towels
  18. Sawdust (raw wood without stain, paint or pressure treatment)
  19. Seashells
  20. Tea bags made of natural materials
  21. Toothpicks and bamboo skewers
  22. Vacuum bag gunk (preferable natural fibers)
  23. Wine corks (provided they are real cork and not the artificial stuff).
  24. Wood ash is ideal for composting.

Things to enrich the soil:
  • Chicken manure (it's  an excellent compost activator)
  • Green Comfrey leaves
  • Seaweed and kelp provides trace minerals)

Things you already knew you could compost.
  • Banana peels
  • Citrus peels
  • Coffee grounds
  • Fruit and veggie scraps from your meal
  • Grass clippings
  • Onion skins
  • Pine needles
  • Pee pods
  • Potato peels
  • Trimmings from houseplants
  • Straw and hay

And have fun smashing the Halloween pumpkins in there too!

How to Compost
Composting is an easy prep and here's how to do it:

  • Step one: Think of composting beyond food waste. Composting is the
    natural way to recycle, so start with food waste, discarded greens, fruit and
    vegetable peels, eggshells, and coffee grounds, then head on out for grass
    clippings, decomposing fruits from your trees, and even paper. (Shred your
    paper before dumping it in the compost.) These are bulking agents to
    accelerate the breakdown of organic materials through a sort of curing
    process. Other good bulking agents include wood chips, leaves or straw.  Be
    sure to limit the layer of shredded paper, wood chips, leaves or straw to no
    more than two inches or you will may a layer that's impermeable to air.

  • NOTE: avoiding composting with meats, dairy and oil which will attract
    rats. The bulking agents will also help to mask the odoriferous foods.

  • Step two: Start your compost pile: Find a convenient spot that's well
    shaded and will drain well.

  • All Seasons Bokashi Compost Starter and Soil Innoculant, pictured at the bottom
    of the page, is made by fermenting wheat bran with molasses and SCD
    Probiotics. Bokashi is a Japanese word that means "fermented organic
    matter." Bokashi promotes germination, flowering, fruiting and ripening in

  • Step three: Keep your compost moist. Let it rain on top of your compost or
    add water. Make sure the bulking agents you've selected in step one don't
    mat down. The idea is to keep the compost moist, but not to trap the

  • Step four: Turn the compost pile. Use a shovel or try a composting bin that
    rotates. The rotation process adds much needed oxygen.  This is the most
    important step in composting. The more you turn the faster your composting
    will mature. It could mature as quickly as one month or three months or if you
    let nature take its natural course, it could be more than a half a year. To
    every season turn, turn, turn!

  • Step five: Speed your composing by adding worms to your compost.
    Technically, it's not necessary to add the worms to your composting as the
    worms will find their way to your compost pile naturally. Also, composting will
    occur naturally without the worms; however, worms will make

  • Composting Tip: worms like coffee grounds! Layer the coffee grounds at
    the bottom of your composting pile to make your pile attractive to

Worm farms and worm composting:

  • Worm farming. Uncle Jim's Worm Farm, pictured immediate upper left-hand
    corner of the page, will help you improve your soil structure. Red Worms are
    nature's wonder workers. Add some composting worms to your garden or
    composting pile and reap the best organic soil available without any harmful
    chemicals or fertilizers. Healthy soil equates to a garden of plentiful fruits and
    veggies.  Trout and pan fishermen see excellent results using them as well.

  • Bosmere composting bin: Made from 100 percent re-cycled materials, the
    Bosmere compost bin, pictured immediate right, is an efficient composter for
    yard waste and plant source kitchen waste. Vented for oxygenation
    throughout, this bin provides access panels for harvesting composted
    material. It has an 11 cubic feet capacity.

  • Forest City Tumbling Composter. For a quick compost turnaround, look to
    the Forest City Tumbling Composter with two chambers, pictured right. This
    compositing bin's efficient dual-chamber design allows for quick curing, turning
    your kitchen and yard waste into food for your soil. Fill it up, give it a turn
    every other day with the built-in hand holds, and in a fortnight you'll have a
    hefty, nourishing batch of compost for your garden.

  • Nature's Head Composting Toilet. When SHTF, you can do something with it!
    The Nature's Head Composting Toilet, pictured immediate right is a reliable
    choice for portable, self contained, urine separating dry toilets on the water,
    on the land, or on the road." "This toilet or head, (the marine term for toilet)
    was designed by two long time sailors who sought to create a more user
    friendly version than anything else on the market. While we designed our
    product to withstand the harsh marine environment, it can be used anywhere
    you need a toilet, especially anywhere that plumbing or electricity is difficult or
    non-existent -- on RVs or campers, in vacation cabins, workshops, barns,
    yurts, even trucks.

    Most importantly, this toilet doesn't have the foul odors associated with all
    other holding tank systems. The low volume air circulation fan built into the
    head provides the added benefit of recycling the air in your bathroom which
    helps make your whole environment smell better. Because it was originally
    designed for marine use, its rugged design and materials (all stainless
    hardware) it has been proven to be extremely durable no matter what your

  • The Composting Toilet System. Learn more about composting human waste
    with a composting toilet system! A composting toilet is self-contained and
    waterless toilet that uses peat moss in the base for  composting matter.
    There is no holding tank and no pump-outs. From systems for cottages to
    year-round systems with micro-flush toilets and gray water gardens, the wide
    range of ecological recycling toilet options, and great books to help you
    choose, install and maintain them. Install a system that meets state codes
    and learn more now.

Happy endings...
Composting is good for the environment, good for your plants and good for you!
Besides, worms are an added protein source should things go really bad.

Related articles...
------------------------------------------------- Revised 05/01//16
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