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Compost smell issue  RSS feed

 
Posts: 21
Location: Prattsville, NY (Zone 5)
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Ok, I bought some compost from a municipal facility, such that was raved about by other farmers.

The only problem is: it smells like the inside of a dumpster.

NOT anearobic / like sewage per se, but exactly like the inside of a dirty, just emptied dumpster on a hot day (you know that smell?).

Question is, anyone have experience with that kind of smell and if it goes away? The compost has not cured for very long. It's still warm.

It looks good, not slimey, but just smells rancid.

Municipal composts are notorious for having flesh waste in them.

Should I add bokashi?



 
Posts: 624
Location: Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada
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Has it got that old burned tire smell?

I've wondered this myself because all the municipal compost I've ever got smells that way. I think it might be "normal".
 
d tyler huff
Posts: 21
Location: Prattsville, NY (Zone 5)
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Yea, from what I've learned it's "normal" because municipal composters use meat / flesh / animal waste in the compost (they can't seperate it, obviously) and that stuff composts with funny gasses.

If you've ever smelled anerobic.. it smells like sewage. THIS stuff smells exacltly like the bottom of a just emptied trash can / dumpster, on a hot summer day. Not burning tires.

 
gardener
Posts: 4862
Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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I was given a load of that type of compost a few years ago, The odor did not dissipate over time so I took the 10yards of nasty compost and created three new heaps, adding my own materials to that stuff, after a month it was much nicer and then it went onto the gardens and around the fruit trees.

Most Municipal composting is made with a high heat process where they make very large windrows and don't turn it as often as it really needs to be turned in this method.
The high heat has to be done because of the "meat" products that are inevitable, they attempt to and are usually successful at killing at least most of the pathogens, but they don't take the time to truly finish the composting before they sell it or give it away.

I no longer bring in compost, I now have enough composting materials for my heaps (I usually have three going all the time).
There isn't really any thing wrong with municipal compost it just smells like it hasn't completed the break down and that is because it usually hasn't.

Redhawk
 
d tyler huff
Posts: 21
Location: Prattsville, NY (Zone 5)
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Bryant Redhawk, as usual, great reply.

That makes a lot of sense.

I'm gonna divide that pile as you did and add Bokashi. What do you think of that?
 
Bryant RedHawk
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Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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Good use of the Bokashi, it will bring a lot of good organisms to the party.
 
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