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composting advice.

Hi, I have added grass trimmings horse manure and hay can anyone give me advice on what's next please, do I water it, cover it, let it dry some or something else?
Thanks very much.


  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,053
    cover it to keep the heat in. Scrunched up newspaper, torn cardboard, old junk mail can all be added, and , if discreet, human wee wee
  • holsdad1holsdad1 Posts: 41
    Thanks very much do I hose it down first?

  • JennyJJennyJ Posts: 8,874
    It needs to be damp but not soggy, so if the hay/straw was dry it would be good to wet it down. Water or "liquid gold" or both, your choice. I don't wee on mine - my compost bins are in full view of the road and to be honest I can't be bothered with collecting it to add "after the event". And only around half the population have the equipment for easy direct application :D.
    Doncaster, South Yorkshire. Soil type: sandy, well-drained
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 10,313
    Unless it's dry there's no need.
    What you need is a good hot heap.
    The best way to achieve that is to turn the compost about every 3 months to keep it all mixed and get as much heat as possible. It's the heat that kills weed seeds and gets it all broken down.
    Don't add anything that won't compost as it will provide no heat or food for the fungi and bacteria that will make your compost.

    I've stopped adding weeds to my heaps as I don't turn them often enough to get sufficient heat to kill the seeds.
    I use grass clipping mainly and all prunings (I shred them first) - lots of cardboard (thanks Amazon), all veg peelings and vast amounts of tea leaves (I don't use tea bags anymore as they don't break down).
    Don't add any human food as rats will turn up in no time.
    It takes about 1 year for my compost to be ready for use. If I turned it more often it would be ready sooner
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • holsdad1holsdad1 Posts: 41
    Ok thanks for all the advice, at the moment the manure is wet and i placed the hay on top of it which is dry, I thought maybe layering it with more manure tomorrow then more hay or do I mix it all up, It was a bit sunny so left it open for now
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 52,165
    "have the equipment for easy direct application D."

    It's tricky for us @JennyJ:D 

    Remember you can add kitchen waste too @holsdad1 , to help with the 'green' material. Peelings from veg, stalks and cores, eggshells etc.  I regularly make soup, so there's plenty from that every week. Once you have material from annuals or perennials being cut back, that'll boost it too   :)

    Oops, I've just seen that Pete mentioned that. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • holsdad1holsdad1 Posts: 41
    Oh and a couple of handfuls of wood shavings.
  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 16,706
    edited April 2022
    I mix it all up like a xmas cake. If it looks dry add water or urine.  Keep it covered , it keeps the moisture in so that the top doesn't dry out too quick. The heat comes from bacterial decomposition, not the sun.
  • JennyJJennyJ Posts: 8,874
    I use more-or-less the same ingredients as @Pete.8 except that I add annual weeds (not things like dandelion roots that seem to be immortal). Mine also takes about a year, with two turnings - once when the bin is full and has stopped subsiding (I keep adding to the same bin until that stage) and again when the next batch gets to that stage and I want to turn into the bin that the first batch is occupying (hope that makes sense). I water around the edges of the bins from time to time because they tend to dry out a bit even though the bins don't have holes or gaps in the sides.
    Doncaster, South Yorkshire. Soil type: sandy, well-drained
  • holsdad1holsdad1 Posts: 41
    Brilliant will do.
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