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Talkback: Four ways to better compost

1. Do you need to add lime and some soil, as I've read elsewhere?

2. My heap has many lice; does that matter?


  • Steve 309Steve 309 Posts: 2,753

    Certainly no need to add layers of soil as they used to advocate years ago - there'll be plenty on the roots of weeds and uprooted plants.  And for that matter, I think the modern idea is to mix rather than layer stuff, which makes more sense.

    Lime, I have no idea - certainly compost ends up acidic, but that's useful for spuds, which get a lot of it.  I've never added it.

    Lice?  Do you mean woodlice?  If so, no matter at all, in fact they're useful detritivores.  You won't have head/body lice in there, you may be pleased to know!

  • Hi image

    As far as im aware, you only need to add lime to the ground when planting brassicas, i wouldnt worry too much for compost. A little garden soil is good as it contains all the bacteria etc needed, but as Steve says, you will probably have enough from what you chuck in image

    If its really slow to compost a little horse manure can help, but really decomposition is a natural process and will occur without much interference from us, everything organlc will compost given enough time image
  • You can also add an activator which speeds up the whole process.

    Some to think of are -

    Various types of manure

    Blood meal

    Bone meal

    Soybean meal

    Human urine

    It is also very good to throw in a little hand full of soil from time to time as soil has plenty of beneficial microbes that help the break-down process.
  • WelshonionWelshonion Posts: 3,114
    Male urine only I understand!

    I make excellent compost and I have never added an accelerator. Just make sure you have a good mix of ingredients including shredded paper and cardboard (does not need to be shredded, can be added in sheets, the little muck worms love it).

    If you have many woodlice your compost heap may be too dry.
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