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Hot Bed, No Manure.  RSS feed

 
Posts: 99
Location: Sudbury ON, Canada
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I live in the city (one that does not allow chickens) yet I'd like to use a hot bed this spring.  My neighbors, and my wife (and probably the local by-law enforcement) would not appreciate me bringing in a pile of manure.  So I'll just try to use my regular compost (mostly kitchen scraps and yard waste) in place of manure, any special considerations?  Special additives needed?
 
gardener
Posts: 4892
Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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To use compost as the heat for a hot bed you need it to heat up pretty fast, that would be the only real consideration.
Coffee grounds do well for increasing the Nitrogen level for a good heat up.
 
pollinator
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pollinator
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Grass clippings heat up faster than anything else in my experience.
 
Posts: 77
Location: Appalachian Mountains
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Plantain leaves are an activator for compost, so are high in nitrogen.  I'm talking about broadleaf plantain, not bananas, although banana leaves should work too. 
 
pollinator
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Yes to all the above . . . coffee grounds are wonderful, pee, grass clippings, etc.  You'll need some browns if you are adding too many grass clippings as they'll start to stink if they're not mixed with some sawdust or shredded paper or dried leaves.

My addition to the list: comfrey.  When I go around and harvest it all, I get about a cubic yard of comfrey leaves.  Within 2 weeks, it's all gone --- it decomposes super fast.  But it's a compost activator and his high in both nitrogen and water, which are necessary for the heat you desire.
 
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