LelKma06 wrote:Hello!! I have started a new compost, in a tumbler and have a few questions, if anyone can help me out I would be very appreciative!!
1. I heard you can put egg shells in the compost, but do you need to rinse out the eggs from them first?
No, you do not need to rince out egg shells.
LelKma06 wrote:2. Can you put paper towels/napkins in it? What kinds?
Any kind of paper towel will break down in a tumbler. Drier sheets probably will not though.
LelKma06 wrote:3. How much water do you add and how often?
Close enough to none as to make my advise, 'never add water to a tumbler'. Even with added vent holes, tumblers tend to not shed water adaquately; making matrix too wet. If its still damp to touch, it still too wet in there. Also use a colander to collect kitchen scraps, to facilitate shedding water.
LelKma06 wrote:4. You cannot put weeds in there correct? What about plant stalks at the end of the season?
If you weed before seeds are ripe they certainly can
go into tumbler. Stalks will break down better if they are clipped to six inch lengths (or so).
[quote="LelKma06"}5. Can you throw stuff in there or do you have to chop it up real small?[/quote]
I'm sure Martha Stewart uses a micro-plane to shred her kitchen waste, in order to get is completed 15 minutes faster than everyone else. Smaller chunk size will result in quicker compost. How hard are you willing to work at your dirt?
LelKma06 wrote:6. Its starting the winter season, so it will be very cold. How can I promote the composting when it is so cold outside and "ensure" that I have a nice compost in the spring for gardening?
You can't, cold weather will slow composting. If you absolutely need to actively compost in the winter, read up on indoor vermicomposting. Or, like everybody else understand the compost you build this year will feed the following years garden.
LelKma06 wrote:7. Our tumbler is pretty full now, what do I need to do now?
I used to fill my tumbler about 2/3 full. Let it compost and tumble a couple weeks and dump out into the garden, chunkage and all. It can finish on the bed, till-turn it under next spring.
LelKma06 wrote:Thank you all so much for your help, I really want to be successful with this but don't want to mess it up!
The fact that you can still tentatively identify a cabbage leaf, or a broccolli root does not mean its bad fertilizer or that food zombies are going to come and getcha. "If" you need perfectly homogenous compost it will be in very small amounts for in seedling flats, not en-mass for the garden. Sift the soil for seedling trays only. There is a tipping point at which oil will slow composting activity. 45 cases of orange peels, or a fryalator of tallow can be too much of a fatty thing.
Your tumbler's job is to get a rot-on with kitchen and yard waste. If I have any complaint it was never adaquate to my need.