Saturday, February 18, 2012

Earth Friendly Do-Over the theme for this week's GBE post is "Do-Over"

This blog is an explanation of my favorite kind of do-over and even it you don't have a Rocket, you can do an earth-friendly do over in your own home (see link at bottom). Here is all you need:

#1. COLLECT YOUR SLUDGE (aka nitrogen producing organic material). Who said a healthy diet couldn't be good for you and the earth? Take your organic materials and set them aside in a container that doesn't offend you or your house guests - you can buy one online for cheap to keep close by as your prepare food in your kitchen or opt to use any air tight container (which is what I do because I am cheap). If you are lucky, as I am, you have earth-conscious friends who don't find containers of sludge above your sink to terribly offensive and you can leave them in view for easy access. They are also a great visual check for the type of things you have consumed during the week. No sludge - can trigger the "maybe I need to eat something green tonight health-o-meter."

(depending on the composter you can compost all organic material ... left over food scraps, peels, rinds, egg shells, and even q-tip brand q-tips. Some heavy duty composters allow for small splintering bones. But I pass on those.)

 #2. SELECT AN APPROPRIATE COMPOSTER. I am lucky we have one at work and I take my scraps weekly into the office and feed the "rocket" with my favorite compost buddy across the hall. This machine is hard core! There are smaller home versions that are more practical and far less expensive than a commercial grad composter like the one seen here. 

#3. DUMP YOUR GUNK. This really is the fun part! :) 

 #4. ADD CARBON. You remember this from chemistry class right? At its base all energy is a direct descendent of carbon and carbon is heat.

Here we use saw dust and chips from a local woodshop floor (yeap, it's all pretty darn "green" in the country). The darker the carbon the greater potential for heat. If you were composting at home spent bark (in fine chips), leaves, and mulch would be acceptable carbons to add to your compost.You could mix them and your scraps in a aerated garbage can or on a common pile (rodent warning)
 (the ratio of carbon to scrap really depends on how wet the mixture is. You want moister but too much water can make the end compost far too wet and slow down the decomposition process. finding the right balance in composting is mostly trial an error. For home composting there are kits that include chemicals that help to break down your organic material, so that you can get your composting down to a "science" and done quickly)

#5. ADD TIME AND ROTATION. Most home composters will require you to turn them occasionally by hand. The Rocket automates that process, siphons off excess water and "spits out" the finished compost.

#6. DO-OVER COMPLETE. Nitrogen rich goodness.

this blog is dedicated to a special 8 year old who reminds her papa to  "love the earth" :)


  1. What a unique response to "do-over". I think composting is really awesome and pretty much as green as they get.

  2. I am a novice composter living in upstate ny. I decided to try winter composting in my garden spots this year to see what happens. I AM NEW!!! Let's see what happens. One cannot be rushed but I am intruogued.

  3. My daughter has a composter in her back yard and the most wonderful garden as a result. Terrific take on this week's topic!

  4. Looks easy, and healthy. Thanks for sharing.

  5. This is really cool approach to the do over, and it would never have occurred to me even though my daughter took a recycling project last summer. Well done!!


  6. Great take on do-overs.

  7. What a great idea!