Poop Pile: Working With Compost

Poop Pile: Working With Compost

For the longest time, I felt guilty that I didn’t have a compost pile. I thought it was a lot of work and a stinky mess.

Source: grownyc.org

While I’m always looking for ways to live closer to the land, I also need to live simply. I thought composting would be rather complicated and require some specific gadgets. But once we had a steady supply of fresh chicken poop, I figured I owed it to myself, my plants and my planet to give it a try.

And guess what? It’s been super-easy, with no odor that I’ve noticed!

Here are the steps I took for a simple compost pile:

  1. I bought a container for indoor compost. It’s a simple plastic storage container with a handle on the lid. (I thought that would make it easier to carry outside to the compost pile, but I usually take the lid off and just carry out the container.)

2. I personally have not saved scraps from our plates, although I’m sure that would work . I save waste from fruit and veggies as I chop (but not meat or dairy scraps). I keep the scraps inside for a day or two max.

3. The compost pile has brown matter (leaves) and green matter (grass clippings). I keep it in the corner of our yard, near the sweet potato patch. I don’t have a fence around it. I just keep it in a semi-neat pile with my shovel.

4. When I’m ready to add to the compost pile, I use a shovel (pitchforks are rather expensive!!) and dig a small hole. Into the hole, I add the fruit or veggie scraps from my indoor container or a bucket of chicken poop from our chicken coop (which I add to daily and dump about once every week or two). Don’t use cat or dog poop!

5. I cover the new scraps with brown or green material. ***This is an important step. It’s what keeps the pile from stinking or attracting bugs/rodents.***

6. It’s rainy season in Florida, so I never water my compost pile. When we have a dry spell, I’ll probably water it with the hose once in a while.

7. Infrequently, whenever it occurs to me (probably once a month or so, maybe less often), I use the shovel to “stir” the pile around a bit.

And that’s it! Once the compost inside the pile is black and shiny, it’s ready to use on plants! Nice and simple!!

I realize that there are a few requirements for my style of composting: a yard, plants to use the compost in, chickens to produce the poop. And I’m sure there are many other methods and styles of composting.

What’s your poop pile style??


6 responses

  1. Have you thought of letting your chickens have first choice of the scraps? Mine devour most everything and whatever gets left is pre-inocculated with chicken poop!

      • Mine get everything except chicken, my wife gives her parrots chicken bones to knaw on but it just doesn’t seem right to me so I don’t do it. I had read a lot of stuff about giving them meat and dairy but was still a bit skeptical, then I found a piece of pork butt (cooked) that had been in the back of the fridge, they went crazy. Now they “pre-process” all of our kitchen scraps into “compost energizer” as I’m sure you’ve noticed their poo will really get a pile goin quick.

    • Keep me posted on how it works for you. I’ve noticed lately that the chickens get into it a little when they’re free ranging in the yard. I don’t really mind, other than I wonder if they would eat their own poop and then contaminate the eggs? Yuck! So I may think of a simple little barrier to go around it. Other than that, it’s been working great! I love that it’s easy, no bugs, no rodents, no smells.

  2. Pingback: Harvesting Sweet Potatoes | Modern Pioneer Mom

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