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dreamdoctor

I live in Iowa amongst plowed fields - corn and soybean stubble don't do much to sustain wildlife - the fence rows have been herbicided and pesticided almost into oblivion (at least the hemp is there with seed for part of the winter). Lots of tracks at the compost heap. I was half joking. My compost pile is outside - and has many visitors - symbiosis. They eat it and then fertilize for me.

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celestina89

Reminds me of Kimchi. You can ferment anything. Cost runs about $20 for about 1 gallon liquid or 2lbs as bran. If you want to buy the official bucket, it's about $40.00 and yes, it has a spigot. Or make your own.

It's the inoculation of fermenting materials into bran such as wheat or rice bran. You use about 1 lb per 100 sq ft. of garden soil plus your food wastes. Or use the liquid in a pail and insert food wastes, then put in garden. Can also use it on kitty litter.

Ingredients are lactobacillus bacteria, phototrophic bacteria and yeast. The first one is in yogurt/fermented foods and helps with your digestive system. Produces lactic acid as by product. There are various strains. The second ingredient - phototrophic bacteria comes from carbon sources. It forms spores and the energy for growth comes from sunlight. It oxidizes part of the wastes to sulfate under anaerobic conditions. It is beneficial for higher forms of life in ponds and lakes.

Not sure if it's enough acid to kill all pathogens (depends on the pH, especially with meat/fish. Can't readily find information on the amount of heat it produces that would be necessary. And there is conflicting studies of the effects concerning organic acids and bacteria. There are still outbreaks of disease because there are acid-tolerant bacterial pathogens. It does get tricky. Organic acids are weak - added for preservation. There has been fermented foods as source of E. coli outbreaks.

As for me, I'll stick to my normal compost pile. My plants like it and my soil gets nice and dark full of nutrients.

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Kevin Noble

This is a good alternative to putting kitchen waste into the large compost pile. My large compost pile was not very close to the house and downhill, so when it is rainy (Pacific NW coast = 90" per year) kitchen wastes tended to not get taken out.

I switched to homemade worm compost bins that sit under a covered porch and keep the waste in small bins in the house a couple of days then dump into the worm bins and top with shredded newspaper (no color print). Once each spring we separate the worms and put the worm dropping in flower and vegetable planters for the deck. The worms don't freeze even when temps drop into the upper 20's. If it were to get colder than that I would move them into the garage. The worms were FREE! I just put a bin with holes and no bottom totes for the liquid on some bare soil and left it for a couple summer months while I added compost. They moved in through the holes, set up house and made LOTS of baby worms. You can even see their eggs in the finished compost.

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