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Walnut shell pellets - they were cat litter, but can I use it in my compost?

 
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Hi everybody,
We finally found a cat litter that doesn't get tracked all over creation by the cat: It's pellets made from crushed walnut shells.
Second benefit: It also absorbs odours exceptionally well.
Third benefit: (fingers crossed) I'm hoping it is compostable. I'm trying it out as a part of my compost pile. The used pellets break down into a sort of sawdust. The cat poop is easily scooped out. For me this would be a win-win-win. Nothing bugs me more than throwing heavy bags of clay-based compost into the garbage.

Does anyone want to weigh in on how those walnut shell pellets will affect my compost?
Anyone?

Thanks in advance.
Glen Brown, Hamilton, Canada
 
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I wouldn't hesitate to compost it.
Even if it contains jugalone, it should break down during the process of composting.
The fact that it is mixed with cat feces is the only drawback.
I don't have experience composting cat poop, but it's considered more potentially hazardous than the poop of chickens, bunnies, cows etc,  because of potential disease organisms.
Someone else can weigh in, but a I belive a thorough and roper composting process will destroy the diseases.
I myself am a sloppy and impatient compost maker, so I wouldn't trust myself to render cat poop safe.

 
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I have long switched to walnut cat litter and found it to be awesome with kitty's toilet activities and less tracking...plus for some reason it lasts longer to lock in odour and clumps so much better than clay.  It has less dust too so my cats no longer do their sneeze-a-thon.

The main reason for switching was the waste i kept seeing that was going to the landfill.  My cats are well fed so it also comes out the other end just as quickly.  Our household have always done regular kitchen composting for our veggie garden so i wasnt too worried about kitty litter composting.  JUST MAKE SURE IT IS FAR AWAY ENOUGH FROM YOUR REGULAR COMPOST AND NOT TOO CLOSE TO YOUR VEGGIE GARDEN.  ALSO ONLY USE LITTER COMPOST FOR BLOOMS AND FLOWERS. My veggie garden is at the backyard and my flower beds are at the front yard.  Yes i dumped the kitty litter at the front yard. If you mix it up with the soil you cannot tell its litter...and surprisingly it did not stink at all. Just smells like earth so people walking by do not even notice it.  Walnut shell litter is dark as well so it helps to disguise.

I started by dumping all my cat toilet directly on my flower beds for winter composting since i have yanked out all the dead plants.  I didnt cover it as I ran out of straw and couldnt find any anywhere.  My garden shop also seemed to have ran out of mulch and we dont have trees around us for leaves.  I pretty much just dumped it and crossed my fingers.  Then it rained...and rained...and rained...and snowed and rained...it was the wettest winter in Vancouver this year.  Rain non stop for 2 weeks at a time.  

I think all that rain helped to 'wash away' or dilute all the ammonia and now 4 months in (its March) all my tulips that i hadn't seen in 3 years started shooting up when we had a warm spell recently.  And also there were mushrooms (not edible) growing there... amazes me that things were growing already.  I thought it might be hazardous to plants since the litter is so 'fresh' but looks like they actually like it...?  Oddly enough an old rose bush that was chopped down to a twig also started growing fresh green branches and baby leaves.

My main reason for doing all that was also to hopefully break down the heavy clay we have in our area.  I am talking huge chunks of clay that you cannot even chisel at.  So hopefully by adding all this organic material (by way of walnut litter) can help with that.  This is just my 1st experiment with litter composting and so far so good...?

Now everytime i see my cats in the litter box i don't cringe at the prospect of needing to chuck it out to the landfill...now i thank them for their prolific contribution to my gardening and I see a fat happy flower popping up instead.  
 
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I agree with Rosabel. In the past, I composted homemade cat litter in a separate pile from my regular compost.

Since I could't guarantee enough heat to positively destroy pathogens, I used the cat compost on my shelterbelt trees. I would also use it around fruit trees if it's worked into the soil.

But in my veggie garden? Absolutely not.
 
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If you want to keep it contained, eg if you have a dog who gets snackish in a yucky way, you can bury a garbage can part or all the way, and keep its lid on.

If you cut the bottom off completely, then if and when it ever gets full you can pull it out of the ground and move it to a new spot without having to interact much with the used litter. Tree roots will move in and utilize the nutrients.
 
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I use dry dirt and forest duff for cat litter.   Then I just dump out my cat box along my property line in a new place each time and cover it with mulch.  


It seems to give the cats the idea to poop out there with the other poopy smells rather than in my flower beds.
Any cat poop in my gardens is more than I want to deal with.
 
Douglas Alpenstock
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Rebecca Norman wrote:If you want to keep it contained, eg if you have a dog who gets snackish in a yucky way, you can bury a garbage can part or all the way, and keep its lid on.


Yes! I forgot about that. Dogs think there's candy in there (bleah!). I had a lid on my cat composter, held down by a cinder block.
 
Rosabel Yee
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Douglas Alpenstock wrote:

Rebecca Norman wrote:If you want to keep it contained, eg if you have a dog who gets snackish in a yucky way, you can bury a garbage can part or all the way, and keep its lid on.


Yes! I forgot about that. Dogs think there's candy in there (bleah!). I had a lid on my cat composter, held down by a cinder block.



Oh! No wonder neighborhood dogs on their walks were so interested in coming into our yard! 😆...my own dog grew up with my cats so usually find our cat's litter box uninteresting, she knows the word 'toilet' so she knows yucky.  Plus my cat who used to raise her slapped her silly when she would play/dig in the litter box. Thankfully we do not have stray cats or neighbor's cats out and about...otherwise it would attract them to come and use my flower beds too.

Not sure about a can buried in the front yard...curb appeal and all that but should I ever need to move it to the backyard then it's a great suggestion that i have overlooked...👍 my mom usually buries kitchen scraps in the ground every 3 or 4 days and we have drawn a huge colony of fat red wrigglers.  Those worms are her pride and joy, her pets...always grabbing a handful to show us how fat her worms are and how healthy and dark the compost looked.  I think we got all the worms from our entire block since we are the only one who composts here...thanks for the great idea!
 
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