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Free fine Carbon sources?  RSS feed

 
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I like the idea of hot composting humanure. But my problem is I don't generate carbon. The book humanure suggests a total compost should be 30C:N which rules out stuff such as coffee grounds 25C:N for bulking material.

Any ideas for high carbon sources that are preferably free? (minus delevery)

I don't get newspaper and negligible junk mail, my local news paper is not worth the paper it is printed on. My small worm bin eats it all up faster than I get it. I checked with a local sawmill but they will only work with me if I take 20 cubic yards per load. I don't have enough room for that much, and I would not be able to use it faster than I am sure ants would colonize it. I do not accumulate leaves, they get blown away faster than I can catch them.

I thought about checking with a pruning service. But the book humanure strongly advises against using something as course as wood chips. I cant afford an industrial machine to turn chips into dust.

 
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Depending on how much you need you can get bark mulch from a garden centre, sometimes in bulk.

Straw bales from a farm supply place. They might also have sawdust. Animal bedding is shaved wood.
 
pollinator
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Do you live in or near a town? If so you should be able to find things like leaves and grass clippings, neatly bagged and put out at the curb for trash pickup. Even when I've lived at some distance from town, I made it a point never to bring a vehicle back empty without some scrounge.....cardboard for sheetmulching, dumpster stuff, gravel and rubble for the driveway, rocks and urbanite and old bricks for landscaping, etc.....
 
nustada adatsun
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Alder Burns wrote:Do you live in or near a town? If so you should be able to find things like leaves and grass clippings, neatly bagged and put out at the curb for trash pickup. Even when I've lived at some distance from town, I made it a point never to bring a vehicle back empty without some scrounge.....cardboard for sheetmulching, dumpster stuff, gravel and rubble for the driveway, rocks and urbanite and old bricks for landscaping, etc.....



I live in a very small town maybe at most 2000 people. The next closest town is large but over an hour away. I don't have and can't really afford a truck.

I have never seen anyone here put out grass clippings. Besides grass clippings have a 20C:N ratio which is too low to reach 30C:N for hot composting.
 
nustada adatsun
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Michael Milligan wrote:Depending on how much you need you can get bark mulch from a garden centre, sometimes in bulk.

Straw bales from a farm supply place. They might also have sawdust. Animal bedding is shaved wood.



The local farm supply place sells dry pine sawdust for $12 for a 2'x2'x3' cuboid. That is a ridiculous price for that, using fuel pellets would be cheaper. I don't have a truck so straw-bails are hard for me to get, they go for $4. But maybe I can work out a delivery.
 
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If newspaper will work, you could ask at the newspaper office if they have old newspapers they give away to use as packing material. My local one does and I go and pick it up every so often to use as packing material for things I sell on eBay.
 
nustada adatsun
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Fabrizia Annunziata wrote:If newspaper will work, you could ask at the newspaper office if they have old newspapers they give away to use as packing material. My local one does and I go and pick it up every so often to use as packing material for things I sell on eBay.



Great idea. I didn't think about that. I will also have to ask what they use for ink. I suppose it might lead to toxicity issues.
 
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Reviving this tread...  after I started this one.  I'm in search of fine carbon sources that can be produced on site.  No sawdust, no paper or cardboard...  What we have is lots of leaves, grass and reeds that can both be left to dry. Chunks of wook, too, in varying stages of decay.  Most of those go into hugelkultur, however.

The problem with all these sources is the particle size,  That might be ok with the leaves (see Daniel's reply in the aforementioned thread), but I'd like to see if the (very abundant) grass and reeds could be used.  Any ideas on a manual procedure to shred or pulverize dry grasses and reeds?.

Also, anyone with experience using grasses and reeds as layering material in the humanure buckets?


Much appreciated, any help.
 
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my compost is made mostly from grass cutting , kitchin waist and ash from fires. but ill put anything that was once alive in there. dead animals if i find them , some kinds of junk mail. boxes . tobbacco butts.i just keep chucking it all in to the mix. once its full , i give it a mix . then i mix it again in spring when i want to use it. i then sive it and then start next years compost.
but if i recommend where to get carbon from . well i would just look around your for smokey chimneys , then go ask them for the ash.
 
pollinator
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Dito wrote: Any ideas on a manual procedure to shred or pulverize dry grasses and reeds?



It's not exactly manual, but arrange it all in a line and run through it with a lawnmower several times - won't get it to sawdust, but will may get it down to pebble-sized pieces.  I wouldn't do this with bark or sticks - you'll be re-sharpening the lawnmower blade too often.
 
Now I am super curious what sports would be like if we allowed drugs and tiny ads.
Perennial Vegetables: How to Use Them to Save Time and Energy
https://permies.com/t/96921/Planting-Perennial-Vegetables-Homestead
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