Compost pit / composter: what type to choose, how to place on site, design and fabrication
Composting of organic waste is a long-known way to increase soil fertility. Its main advantage is a long positive post-effect: compost not only fertilizes the soil, but also recultures it. Dry loose sandy loam or dense loam after 2-3 years become completely fertile soil. Devices and adaptations for the preparation of compost in the old manner are called pits, because the compost was originally prepared in pits. However, the compost pit is being made by hand for a reason. Tightening of sanitary requirements does not allow the modern owner to place a waste composter at his own discretion. On the other hand, the achievements of agrotechnics and biochemistry make it possible to accelerate composting and reduce its impact on the environment. How to combine all this in an optimal way - this is the article in question. The emphasis in the presentation of the material is made for conditions in small areas (sotok 12 or less), but all the same methods and methods are suitable for large ones.
Modern knowledge and methods of their use allow a bunch of waste that is digested in compost biochemically in the same way, to decorate if not beautifully, then at least it is acceptable in sight, compare left and right to Fig .:
Compost pile as it is (left) and in technical and decorative design (right)
However, aesthetics in composting for fertilizer is the last thing, and more importantly the following:
- The size of the plot;
- The presence of adjacent adjacent and nearby objects, subject to contamination;
- Land use on the site;
- Composition and amount of waste to be composted.
Based on these factors, first, the composting method is selected, either completely or partially anaerobic or aerobic, using biologics for composting waste or in a natural way. Secondly, the device of the waste composter:
The device of the container for composting waste on the surface of the soil
- The pit is buried below the humus layer.
- A pile or partially buried container on the surface of the soil, see Fig. on right.
- A leaky box or other container that does not have direct contact with the ground.
- Hermetic container for the rapid preparation of compost using special biological preparations.
The composter of the latter type can not be used independently. But an unpressurized composter with its own hands is easy and almost always without additional costs. But first, let's look briefly, and what's worth saving is, that is, buy ready.
Do or buy?
Possible options for a purchased composter for a private sector are shown in Fig. below. Pos. 1 - hermetic container for continuous anaerobic composting using biopreparations. Gives a helping of ready-to-compost in less than a season; possibly 2-3 times per season. Capacity - up to 600 kg of raw materials. Prices of devices for 200-300 kg - 9-15 thousand rubles. You can not permanently feed raw materials. Each loading requires refueling as a non-expensive product.
Ready-made composters for composting organic waste for fertilizer and humus
Pos. 2 - box for staged and continuous composting (see below). For anaerobic composting is ineffective, because is not tight. Partially anaerobic requires manual labor - mixing the ripening mixture. Capacity up to a ton and more, prices - 3000-5000 rub. Pos. 3 - ventilated box for partially anaerobic step composting. Capacity is also up to a ton and more. Heavy manual labor on leaving (see further) does not demand. Prices - approx. 2000 rubles. But you need to buy 2 (for composting with biologics) or 3 pcs. for the natural. True, the costs are not lump sums, but are divided by years. Compost of both can be brought directly into the soil, see below.
Note: For raw materials for aerobic composting and composters for it, see below.
How to calculate the volume
The capacity of both ready-made and self-made composter is taken on the basis that one adult permanently inhabiting the site during the season gives raw materials for approx. on 150 kg of the ready compost. The compost volume from compostable plant waste can be assumed to be approx. 10 kg with weaving. Total for the infield with a family of 4 people need a composter approx. for 800 kg. It is better to take a ton - partial filling of the tank does not affect composting. If compost is prepared in stages, such capacity should be each section, see below.
Compost in appearance resembles humus - a dark mass, moist, oily in appearance. Compressed by hand, sticks together in a tight lump, but does not stick to the fingers and palms or almost does not stick. By the way, this is a good way to determine the compost maturity. Get it either in stages or continuously. The first method requires capacity according to the number of years of maturation of the mass. If compost is made naturally in a partially anaerobic way on the surface, the mass will have to be transferred from capacity to capacity each year. The maximum productivity of one such 3-sectional composter is up to 2-3 tons per year. How the 3-compartment compost box is arranged is shown in Fig .:
The device and dimensions of the composter for composting in a natural way
Preparing compost in it is quite a labor-intensive procedure, but compost from such a box can be immediately applied to the beds. The reason is that at different stages of maturation of the mixture, air access to it is determined by the design of the sections.
In a continuous way, you can get no more than 400-600 kg of compost per year from one composter. Raw material in it at the same time periodically loaded with raw materials from above, and the finished compost is taken out from below. Thus, only one working capacity is needed, which is of no less importance for sectors less than 10-12 acres.
The device of the box for continuous unventilated composting is shown on the next page. rice:
The device of a box for continuous composting
If domestic wastes are mainly composted, the box is made 2-sectioned: every year, one of the sections is loaded with raw materials, and the other gradually selects a mature compost. The next year the working and maturing sections change places. Air access (see below) is controlled by shifting the top cover. Ready compost must be diluted.
Note: any compost for organic waste is placed in the penumbra by shelter. Too weak light, direct sunlight and atmospheric precipitation irreparably corrupt the compost mass.
However, finally the compost turns into humus only under the influence of soil living organisms. Therefore, to introduce into the soil as it is, you can only compost, cooked in a natural way for 3 years. Compost "accelerated" with bioadditives or cooked in a continuous way can cause soil to become sour, so it needs to be diluted with sand and possibly with dry ground clay. Clay is the most affordable construction or self-excavating. The proportions are as follows, depending on the soil:
- Loose sandy loam - mature compost: sand: clay 1: 1: 0.5 volume parts.
- The same, the average - 1: 1.5: 0.25.
- Dense sandy loam and light loam - compost: sand 1: 2.
- Medium and dense loam are the same, 1: 3.
Sand and clay of money stand, and shoveling them with compost tons is not an easy job. Therefore, on a small plot of finished compost, you can also use the trace. way: the soil in the plot under composting is slightly powdered with dolomite, calcareous flour, ground eggshell or shell rock. Compost is saturated with humic compounds and therefore has an acid reaction; carbonates neutralize it. After that, compost is poured onto the prepared place with a layer of 10-15 mm. In the near-trunk circles of trees and on the rows of berry bushes, nothing more is needed. On sandy loam soils, too, nothing is required for strawberries. On plots for other garden crops, you must first plant pumpkin and vegetable (sweet) peppers - the compost is also saturated with nitrates, and these plants do not accumulate them in fruits. Cucumbers, however, do not plant - on compost they are strongly ill with powdery mildew. The next year the plot will be suitable for any crops.
Note: in no case do not plant on compost and high beds for compost root crops, edible bulbous and green!
With or without air?
Anaerobically, i.e. completely without air, compost waste is recycled either in a sealed compost (see above) or in a deep pit in a natural way. The dignity (very relative) of the last method is that the ground pit "digests" large pieces of wood felled alive. Disadvantages, firstly, a very long process - compost can be introduced into the soil in the spring of 4-year after the laying of raw materials in the pit. Secondly, an anaerobic pit needs to be loaded immediately. And most importantly - it's a very dirty way. Where it is not yet prohibited, sanitary standards for the location of the pit (see below) must be observed scrupulously - violations are manifested quickly and palpably.
Aerobic compost, is prepared with free air access to the composter from high-quality raw materials, see below. Like anaerobic, it is suitable for application to the soil without dilution, but ripens quickly - from autumn to spring of next year. Prepared in special devices and apparatus, also see below.
In small private farms, compost is made preim. partly by anaerobic means: air is supplied to the compost mass either batchwise, mixed with forks (it is useless to pierce - it is necessary to airlift the entire mass), or limitedly through ventilation slots or holes in the box. The first method requires regular heavy manual labor; the second - episodic as needed.
Qualitative partial anaerobic compost is obtained if the "chemistry" of the ripening mass is maintained on the verge between fermentation and decay, so composting of wood harvested alive in it is unacceptable - for it this face is very sharp, and as a result, methyl alcohol is obtained. The influx of air shifts the process towards decay; its lack - in the direction of fermentation. The need for mass in air is determined by the temperature at its depth. Measure it daily with a glass thermometer on a stick: immerse, hold for 5 minutes, take out, and look at how much a column will fall in the ambient air. If less than 3-4 degrees, you need to mix, even if the mass ripens in a ventilated box. More than 6-8 - stirring in an unventilated box or pit should be postponed, and at ventilated to cover a part of the cracks.
And a pile?
Compost pile in the sense of biochemistry is a ventilated box. The technical difference is that the raw material should be poured on it not with even layers, but with pyramids: the first portion of the slides, and the next on it, so that approximately conical shape is preserved. Restriction of air access, if required, is carried out by a partial covering with a film. Ted, if necessary, from the middle, without breaking the edges.
Location and sanitation
Sanitary rules for the location of the compost pit are quite tough, see fig. But they are calculated for the ultimate case - the pit (see below) for composting livestock wastes or a bunch. The leakage of liquid effluents from the most carefully concreted pit is a systematic phenomenon, In the process of composting, chemically active substances are formed, and considerable thermal stresses arise in the lining of the well; especially in winter.
Rules for the location of the compost pits on the ground
Note: the location relative to the road also applies to the boundaries of the site and the buildings, and, relative to the sources of drinking water, to children's playgrounds and institutions.
If on a piece of land under the composter lay out a clay castle or pave it with dry brick, tile, etc. and covered with film waterproofing, the sanitary rules will not change, but in fact the compost box on the surface of harm will bring - already 1-1.2 m from it soil samples will be clean. In this case, it is enough to be guided by the norms for hozpostroek: not closer than 1 m to each other or to the border of the site and not closer than 6 m to the walls of residential buildings with windows.
An uncomfortable neighbor may be pressed out of pure harm and a health inspector will come to you. Suddenly, immediately start a speech about the fine, then, first, know: until the harmful effect is proven, it can only be for violation of sanitary norms, and this is not enough. It happens (we will be realists) this amount simply goes from hand to hand, and that's all. Do not like it - demand a decision in court. Why? Because in court you have the right to demand examination. And from representatives of the authorities to extort an advance payment for it - undisguised corruption. The result is almost certainly in your favor - there is no real harm from the surface composter. In this case, the costs of the case (at least in part) are paid by the loser. For supervisory bodies, this means overspending of budgetary funds, for which the head is not smooth. The most stupid and corrupt official knows this very well, and the matter is limited to the prescription to transfer the object of the proceedings. Which must be completed within the specified period. Otherwise, your problems are serious enough.
Note: the possibility of formal claims of third parties regarding a surface composter is practically excluded if it is located next to a street toilet, and it is placed correctly.
How to deal with the well?
Another interesting question is compost and water supply. There are 2 options. If there is something like "a well with drinking water" or "autonomous water supply" in the documents for the site, there is no way out - it is necessary to put the composter strictly according to the norms, and even downwards from the source of water along the slope. Otherwise, you are guilty in advance of all possible consequences.
The second is that you are only planning to acquire your own water. On such a case, you know: you can not obtain the certificate on your own and get a certificate on its source. Drinking water is closer to 7-8 m from the surface simply does not happen, and independent extraction of minerals from a depth of more than 5 m is not allowed by the subsoil legislation.
You can bake the so-called. well on the sand to the first aquifer - vadose. The water from it for irrigation is most often suitable, and it is useful to pass a test for analysis in all senses. In this case, in order to avoid possible troubles, the composter is placed as a street toilet - no closer than 15 m to a well below it on a slope. Neighboring wells are also affected, and if there are none, then neighbors planning to water themselves also have the right to demand that you transfer the composter. In this case, it is better to solve the issue by peace without transferring to the authorities.
Do you dig a hole?
Well, it turns out, it is better not to mess with the compost pit? In general, but if you bring out a more or less developed livestock farming, and local conditions allow it to be placed according to all rules, it is quite possible to make a compost hole yielding income comparable to that of the main production.
To begin with, you will have to work hard and spend to build a concrete pit for 4 sections, on the left on the rice; In it, pigs' manure pereprevaet in compost. Sectional dimensions in plan on inside approx. 2x1 m; depth - 0,8-1,5 m. It will also be necessary to equip the dryer and crusher for humus. The working cycle of such a pit is 4 years old: the section of the 4th year is abundantly limed to bring down acidity and kill the embryos of pests. At the end of the summer of the 4th year, the compost from its pit is selected, dried, ground, diluted 1: 2 with sand, packed and sold as humus, from which it is virtually no different. The pit is filled with fresh raw materials, and it becomes a pit of year 1. Method of preparation - partially anaerobic; Toss the mixture with pitchfork.
Types of compost pits
Note: liming of the soil compost pit (in the center in Fig.) is produced with a slightly different purpose - first of all, to kill aerobic bacteria. The pit with perforated lining (on the right in Fig.) Differs only in the large expenditure of money and labor. Sanitary standards for all compost pits de jure and de facto are the same without allowances. Today, the ground compost hole has lost its meaning - at the current prices for fuel, large wood waste is more profitable to put into the oven or fireplace.
Raw materials for composting
Not all organic waste can be felled for composting. The rejection of the unsuitable is done on the following grounds:
- Isolation in the process of composting of volatile and / or liquid harmful and dangerous substances, as well as unpleasant odors.
- Attractiveness as a nutrient medium and / or substrate for the propagation of harmful organisms - flies, rats, spores of pathogens and stray animals.
- Presence in the composition of raw materials of parts or organs capable of maintaining viability in composting conditions for a long time.
- The ability to become a reservoir of viruses or a virus carrier.
- Presence of chemically resistant harmful substances in the composition of raw materials.
What can and can not be filled into a composter, shown in Fig .:
What can and can not be filled in an organic waste composter
- The leaves, straw (not hay!), As well as chaff and bran differ sharply from everything else in that they die physiologically with their own death. They make compost "luxury" - fast, nutritious, perfectly structuring soil without auxiliary additives. This raw material is best composted separately, see below.
- It's also better to put banana skins off other skin - from them a good fertilizer with magnesium is made. Onion husks also have an independent value as a material for the preparation of fertilizers.
- Weeds are undesirable to compost and non-seeded - some of them are able to regenerate literally from 10-15 cells. In addition, all weeds are a refuge of viruses that attack cultivated plants. If viral diseases of plants on the site and in the vicinity are not noticed, we can prepare liquid green fertilizer from the weeds. But it's best to dry them all, burn them without any, let the ashes run out onto the fertilizer.
- Raw meat pieces and bones, a little the composting process will move to rot, give a liquid corpse poison. In addition, the meat smell strongly attracts flies, rats and carnivorous, prone to disease rabies.
- The waste of life of all animals that can assimilate animal proteins is an ideal nutrient medium for larvae of flies.
- Raw fish are also very fond of flies and rats, but it is a controversial issue, see below.
- Products of combustion of mineral fuel, nutshells and fruit bones (more precisely, from the shell) are storehouses of heavy metals and radionuclides.
- Citrus flesh and dairy products strongly acidify the compost mass and prevent it from ripening. Milk, in addition, causes irreparable fermentation.
- Wood materials prepared alive, when composted, release methyl alcohol and its vapors.
- In the solanaceous tops (potatoes, tomatoes, vegetable pepper, eggplant) contains a toxic and persistent alkaloid solanine. Even more it is in the cleaning of potatoes, they can not be composted either.
- For composting are suitable small not completely lignified waste of pruning trees, bushes and grapes - biochemically they are still grass.
About garden composters
Where to put leaf litter? - Everyone who has a garden and ornamental trees thought about it. The main goal of composting in this case is to destroy the hibernating eggs, larvae and adult pests. It is achieved by free aeration of the compost mass by the admission of frost to it in winter. Alternatively, on the contrary, a complete cessation of air access and a rise in temperature above 42-44 degrees.
According to the first principle, a garden composter - a basket, poses. 1 and 2 in Fig. Diameter approx. 1.2 m; height - approx. 1.5 m. From a direct basket without a bottom, compost in spring is not completely selected (left to position 1): leave it 5-10 cm, which is abundantly calcareous. This will kill the survivors of particularly persistent embryos of harmful organisms. In a conical basket with a bottom (pos.2), they will not survive this way if you put it on bricks, etc. supports with a thickness of 7-10 cm.
Garden composters for green foliage and straw
In the garden drum-type composter-crusher, foliage is filled and biopreparation is introduced, which accelerates the energy-releasing chemical reactions. Then the container is hermetically closed and the handle is twisted, as indicated in the instructions. After a day or two, the contents are poured into a composter-basket - all the harmful was lost.
Homemade drum-type garden composter (item 3) acts similarly to a basket with a bottom, but is more effective. Turning his drum every day, from the beginning of the fall leaf to the cold, you can prepare 2-4 servings of compost. Pests die from excess air and too low for them in the early stages of temperature development. But, if the heat is above approx. 13 was dragged on for a long time, there will not be any sense - they will survive. For another example of a simple garden composter, see the story:
Video: a simple garden composter with your own hands
Note: sanitary norms for composting of leafy foliage and other initially dead plant wastes do not spread. Therefore, you can compost the fallen leaves even in sacks, see the roller:
Video: What to do with fallen leaves? We prepare the compost in bags
Biopreparations for composting
The choice of a bacterial preparation for accelerating composting (their assortment on sale is extensive) is closely related to the topic of this article. Firstly, because the most expensive "instant" means, allowing to prepare compost for 7-20-60 days, are calculated for anaerobic composting in sealed containers. In the box they too will work, but in the same way as cheaper tools like "for the season". As for the latter, they are not so "zasezonnye" - the biochemical processes in the compost prepared with their help are quite different from those occurring with natural preparation and decay (stabilize) much more slowly after the compost seems to be ready and its temperature is equal to outdoor. Therefore, compost with the funds "for the season" should be left to dry in the winter, dilute (see above), and only then used for its intended purpose. In the same way, self-made tools for EM composting work and are used, see the video:
Video: how to prepare EM compost preparations for yourself
Secondly, if you use ready-made drugs, you need to do some calculations. For example, a bottle of 200 kg costs 150 rubles. A kilogram of finished compost will then cost 75 kopecks. And if the bottle per ton costs 400 rubles, then 40 kopecks. The conclusion is obvious? Not really. It is necessary to adapt to the size of the site and the amount of raw materials for composting. Biopreparations are not stored after opening the package, they should be used immediately and completely. For what should be prepared enough raw materials. In general, it is better to use self-made ones for giving a day off, and in small private farms such brands are not bad:
- Happy summer resident (Biocompost) - inexpensive, up to 600 kg of raw materials in the pit, heap or box pereprevaet in compost for a month.
- Dr. Robik and Dezon Bio - give a stable result. Packaging is convenient for small areas.
- Green Wizard - allows you to make the insertion as the composter is filled.
Materials, constructions, modifications
In a small area, surrounded by the same neighboring ones, it is best to construct a vented compost box, capable of operating both in the stage and continuous mode. Especially - if it is giving a day off, at which the supply of raw materials to the composter is irregular. If there are residues / wastes of suitable materials, then you can make and unventilated. For example, how a compost box made of slate and trimming pipes is made, see video:
Video: composter made of polypropylene pipes and slate
Most often, compost cases are made from wood. The best material - building pallets (pallets) and boards from them, see fig .:
The device of a ventilated compost box of boards.
On them there is a strong mature tree. Under the influence of excretions of the overweight mass it darkens and becomes slimy, but quite resistant to decay, lasts more than 5 years.
Drawings of 2-mode compost box of boards approx. for 700-800 kg of compost are given in Fig .:
Drawings of a compost box made of wood for two composting methods
Its small drawback is the presence of metal parts. In the neighborhood of the compost they quickly rust, the fasteners weaken, the hinges of the loops jam. You can eliminate it by making a box without a single nail, see fig .:
Advanced drawer of boards for two composting methods
The dimensions of the grooves under the facade boards are not critical. They are taken based on the available material. It is only necessary to withstand the slope angle of 60 degrees more or less accurately. To select the finished compost from under the bottom of the mass, the lower boards are removed and then put back. Air exchange in this box is also easier to adjust: horizontal slots on the facade are covered with poles, rags, etc. For other variants of wooden compost boxes see video:
Video: wooden compost box for 1 section with your own hands
Video: a solid compost box for 2 sections
How to fill boxes
All these composting boxes are filled in the same way. The first layer 10-20 cm thick - plant waste from the site; possibly mixed with manure. The first layer is covered with a thin, but a continuous layer of hydrated lime. Further, household waste and vegetable from the site are stacked alternating layers of 5-15 cm. If a homemade composting accelerator is used, they process each "household" layer. Purchasers use the instructions. To enhance the greenhouse effect, the box with compost for the next season must be topped with hay, straw or a harmless dry top and top over with a film. Better - opaque.
What about the fish?
It is very tempting to punch fertilizer and animal household waste (not feces!). Especially - fish, they are a rich source of phosphorus and trace elements. A means to make them unattractive and unsuitable for feeding and breeding harmful organisms is. This, firstly, household waste shredder; it is mounted most often under the sink in the kitchen. Secondly, a lot of it must be processed immediately by composting with any bio-accelerator of composting (it can be homemade) and immediately covered with a layer of vegetable waste from the site at 10-15 cm. In extreme cases, it is ground. And what is a household waste shredder and what they are, see the video:
Video: addition to the composter - waste shredder