Decomposition of Racehorse Poo

As the title states, I have acquired a large amount of Racehorse Poo at a very reasonable price.

I ordered 30 bags of this and managed to fill a compost bin made of 3 pallets and chicken wire front. The surplus filled a small corner of my allotment. I had ordered the amount as I thought they would be small bags as seen by the roadside examples elsewhere.

Having put my back out in wheelbarrowing and emptying all this poo, I wondered how long it will take to be usable. Normally a year is required for previous offerings to be ready to dig in. But that was more straw/wood shavings than poo. This the real thing. Almost solid. Hence the effort in emptying the bags. It reminded me of ancient times when householders use to clear up after passing horses for their roses!

So presumably it will take longer to break down and I shall have to mix with more vegetable matter to produce an ideal manure.




  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 24,050

    If it's just droppings, poo, sh.., call it what you will, it will take far less time to break down than straw or woodshavings. If your compost heap has just droppins you'll have a bit of a slimy mess, 

  • I should think that it will break down pretty quickly. Turn it a few times and i reckon it should be ready by the Spring. Knowing that its from racehorses it should be faster anyway!!

  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 24,050

    Nice one Man of Kent

    I put it straight on rough bits of garden, shreddings on top and plant through it. Not babies or delicate fussy plants but shrubs and tough perennials are OK and bulbs come through fine. I think it's the ammonia in the urine of stable manure that causes problems, droppings don't seem to. Mine's not such high quality. Unspecified breed of pony

  • Some excellent articles on the web on the "how to do's. Definitely worth reading and following.

    Jessica Paige's article (USA) is a good read & concise

    A heap should be kept to around 6ft base x 3ft high and if managed well will be compost in 3-6month(winter ) & 2-3month (summer)

    We add layers of grass clippings and chicken poo(nitrogen) to counteract stable bedding such as shredded paper and straw. The horse pee in some of the shredded paper is also a good source of nitrogen.

    We also turn religiously every 3 weeks to aerate

    Keep it covered and damp not wet

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 42,810

    If it's just the 'lumps' from the stable and field pickings, I'd spread it on bare areas of the veg patch now and let winter and the worms do their work.  In the spring most of it will have been incorporated into the soils and all you 'll need to do is fork it over and get growing. image

    If you've too much to do that with, then use  some of  it in layers  when building your usual compost heap - it'll serve as an 'activator' and get the compost working really quickly. 

    Gardening is cheaper than therapy, and you get tomatoes. 
  • Stand by for your crops to race away. image

    I'll get me coat. image

  • I agree with Dove - I do that and just leave it. I was a bit squeamish the first time I planted (I AM a girl..) but actually I had the best crop this year. I soon got over the squeamishness and learned to love the poo...!

  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 24,050

    It's great stuff, I'm glad it's not just me that uses it as it comes. I get some funny looks and warnings sometimes.

  • artjakartjak Posts: 4,168

    I put some fresh horse poo on a flower bed that was limping along and it really raced away; especially the annual form of laveteria (no pun intended)image

  • I acquired some cow poo without straw or shavings and mixed most of it with my compost. the rest has rotted down nicely and is going on the rhubarb soon.

    Keep it turned and tidy and it will decompose in a few months.

  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 11,104

    Should be good for a runner bean trench.

    It's not a mess, it's a nature reserve.
  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 11,104

    image Sorry, hard day at work and two glasses of wine.(since I got home)

    It's not a mess, it's a nature reserve.
  • That's terrible fidget. Drinking two glasses of wine and not offering us any.image

  • Be careful of the straw and shavings. If dug in too fresh they will deplete your ground of Nitrogen…. which is a bit like 1 step forward and 2 back. OK as mulch, or after rotting.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 42,810

    Oldcompostheap says that the delivery he's received is more or less solid droppings rather than bedding, which is why I'd be happy to put it straight onto the land rather than compost it.

    Gardening is cheaper than therapy, and you get tomatoes. 
  • artjakartjak Posts: 4,168

    Oldcompostheap is a wonderful name; you'd never have to dress up for any event!image And you'd get away with it!

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