toxcrusadr
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Re: Check out these composting factors

Lifestyle Lift Journey wrote:I don't add things below to the compost bin because they can cause maggots and other crawlies.
Not to add
Meat
Fat Bones
Citrus
Onion & onion family (chives, leeks, garlic etc)
Fish
Dairy products
Pet waste
Large wood chips
Diseased plants or weeds

I hope this helps.
Good luck!
I am very curious about your avoidance of the citrus and onion family. Many of us put those in with no observable problems.

There is a belief in some circles that citrus will throw the pH off, but unless your entire pile is mostly citrus peels, it's not going to have a significant effect. The organic acids will biodegrade, unlike mineral acids. They can take a bit longer to decompose, so I tend to chop them up in smaller pieces. I actually wonder about the acidity of the peels in the first place, obviously the flesh/juice is acidic, but do we really know about the peels?

As for the onion family, this is new to me, perhaps you can elaborate?

Just trying to upgrade my knowledge base. :-]
Tox

Toil
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Mineral or organic, any acid gets buffered by aerobic bacteria (specifically, the polysaccharides they produce). Likewise, neutral items containing lignin and cellulose will increase acidity when broken down by fungi.

We are used to thinking of our species as unique - the only ones who manipulate the environment rather than adapting to it. But take a look at what's really going on, we see plants and microbes have an impact on the planetary and local environment far greater than our own (thank the dog!).
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rot
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It's dead Jim

..

"
LOL. Thanks for the replies, but the original post was not about my compost, but how the commercial stuff gets to your door without any bugs."

It's dead Jim

..

Toil
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...and I'm pretty sure the answer is that the commercial stuff has no more bug food in it, while your homemade stuff still has bug food. Ergo... bugs!

where nothing is decomposing, there are no decomposers.
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a0c8c
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Alot of commercial companies will bake their compost as well(to kill off bugs), which slows down the benefits of compost.
Home Gardener from Austin, TX; by way of Iowa.

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Halfway
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Toil wrote:...and I'm pretty sure the answer is that the commercial stuff has no more bug food in it, while your homemade stuff still has bug food. Ergo... bugs!

where nothing is decomposing, there are no decomposers.
Nah, I was in Arlington, VA this summer at a friend's and his neighbor had some municipal compost delivered by the truckload the day or so prior. It had rained and the compost stunk God-awful. The owner was very upset (very nice neighborhood) and said it was because the compost was not finished and that was a common problem with minincipal compost.

So, in my OP, I was talking about my finished compost. Finished, all the way, done, no more breaking down, completely DONE. Since it sits outside, it has bugs in it. Yup, just like the lawn and forest and any other pile of anything.

I think the question was answered early on and again, this is not about MY compost thank you. :)

LOL.
Zone 4a.

Toil
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so what do you suppose the bugs are eating? Are they just living in your pile, and going out from it to forage?


I can assure you, the amount of life you see, whether with your naked eye or a microscope, is proportional to available food sources. This is true in your worm bin, hot pile, or sheet composting, especially when there are few disturbances. Tilled earth will not show any microscopic soil mites, and if I see them I know for sure the earth has not been tilled for quite some time.

As pointed out, heat will also eradicate all the critters. In nature, we call that catastrophe.

But as you just pointed out, if you leave a pile of food outside, things will come and eat it. "Finished" is a subjective term, meaning "ready for your purposes". Maybe I should have said "stable".

I imagine a large windrow operation consistently hits very high temps. Where is the heat coming from? It is lost energy that would otherwise become more bugs.
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