Graham Buckley

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since Nov 16, 2011
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Recent posts by Graham Buckley

Glad it's going well!

It really is important to get rid of oxygen if possible, and to be generous with the bran.

If you have any pictures of your set up, I'd love to share them on my site: http://www.bokashicompostinghq.com. Knowing that other people are using Bokashi composting, and hearing how they're getting on can be good motivation for newcomers. If you're up for putting some photos up, please get in touch with me via the contact form...
6 years ago
Hi Chris,

This is great - thanks for sharing. I'd definitely be interested to hear about your Bokashi story over the coming weeks and months.

Over at Bokashi Composting HQ I'm about to start a series of short posts about people all over the world who are using Bokashi. I'd like to use it as a way to inspire others to use Bokashi, to show them that it is a great system and that it could be relevant in their situation. I'd love it if you wanted to get involved. All I'd be looking for is a short description of how or why you use Bokashi (100-200 words would be fine, but feel free to write more!), a photo or two, and a piece of advice or top tip you'd like to offer. If you're interested, get in touch via permies or the contact form on Bokashi HQ.

As for other threads dedicated to Bokashi, there is this one: http://www.permies.com/t/11246/organic-sustainable-practices/me-bokashi which might be of interest.
7 years ago
Melissa,

That all sounds great. I've don't know anyone who has used coco coir for their bran, so would love to know how you get on. The home made buckets sound brilliant too... Do you have any photos?

Best of luck with it - make sure you let us know how you get on

Graham.
7 years ago
If it's pure Bokashi - it will not explode. This isn't fermentation in the same way that homebrew ferments. It's more of a pickling process. There shouldn't be any carbon released in gas form in a Bokashi system (unlike homebrew where the yeast produce CO2).

Have a look at the link posted above by Pam - they have a large scale BioFertilizer process there, using an airlock to allow gas to escape. That sort of system might be more helpful for you.
7 years ago
Saybian,

Sorry - Only have time for a quick response tonight...

You can inoculate a variety of different substrates with your EM. I've not experimented too much myself, but common choices for home made Bokashi are paper (often newspaper) or sawdust (just make sure that it is clean and untreated).

Bokashi is a great compost innoculant. I'm planning on writing a little bit on the subject, but probably not in the detail that you're looking for. My aim is to encourage people to get started with Bokashi really, rather than aim for the large scale composting you're talking about! For now, at least. You can definitely add your Bokashi pre-compost (or lacto fermented waste) to a regular composting system. It should roughly double the speed at which the matter composts. However, for the system you describe, I'd expect that if you used the Bokashi pre-compost in enough volume it could act as a great kick starter for the break down of carbon. With the approach you're talking about, the most important bit can just be getting it up to the right temperature so that the heat takes over and things really get moving. I've never tried anything on this scale though, so would love to hear about anything you discover.
7 years ago
Pam,

Interesting link - thanks for sharing it. I've not seen that approach before.

The method described at milkwood is not Bokashi. The Bokashi process releases no gas (so this is why people don't deal with the gas issue!). For me, this is part of its appeal, because it means that a system can be fully sealed - trapping in any odours (although there arn't any unpleasant odours with Bokashi) and keeping out pests.

I'd expect that the process described at milkwood releases mainly carbon dioxide. This looks very similar to the beer brewing method. The tube and water is there to allow carbon dioxide out, to release pressure, without letting air in. This provides a CO2 rich, and air free environment inside the composter, allowing the yeast to work effectively at fermenting the mix.

As for people having problems with Bokashi - I think the most common problem comes from people not using Bokashi Bran, or using a low quality home made bran. Whilst there is nothing wrong with making your own bran, and it can be highly effective, the key is to make sure that there is a high density of Effective Microorganisms (EM) present. It's the EM that does the hard work, and without them Bokashi composting will not work. A lot of people seem to forget that the EM are absolutely essential. For people starting out with Bokashi, I'd recommend buying your bran from a reputable seller. Then, once you've understood the process I recommend experimenting a bit, and perhaps making your own bran.

You can find full instructions of how to ferment food waste using Bokashi at Bokashi Composting HQ. Just don't forget your bran!
7 years ago
There are some great questions coming up here, and I agree with you that most of the information on the internet about Bokashi is designed as a marketing pitch.

In fact, because of that, I've recently started writing for Bokashi Composting HQ. There is some advertising on there, but no direct product sales. The main agenda for the site is to promote Bokashi and to bring all of the best information into the same place, NOT to make sales of bran, buckets or any other equipment. There is only a bit of information on there at the moment, but I'm working at writing more.

McCoy - For a quick overview of the Bokashi process, have a read of this:What is Bokashi Composting?

Saybian - Once the fermentation stage of the process is complete (ie the organic matter has been in the Bokashi bin, with bran for a couple of weeks) you then have a few options with what you do next. You're right that the final process it usually completed in the soil (Have a read of this for more information: Bokashi Compost In The Garden). The process is quick. Often, the waste will be unrecognisable within a couple of weeks. However, there are other ways to use your Bokashi compost. I haven't finished writing the pages for these options yet, but you can add the Bokashi mix to a worm composting system or to a regular compost pile. Because you can add cooked food, meat and dairy to a Bokashi system, this is a great way of getting these types of scraps into a regular compost pile or worm bin.

I've got a bit of a list of other topics I hope to cover on the site, but if you have any specific areas you'd like to read about please let me know and I'll try to address them. I'll also keep checking back here to help answer any other questions you might have...

Also - please share these links with anyone else who might be interested. The more people using the Bokashi process, the better!
7 years ago
Sounds good to me!

Let me know how it turns out
7 years ago
Ah sorry, I misunderstood what you meant. If you're just using sawdust in the bokashi bin, that should be fine.

I've never used it as a mulch myself, but I'd expect that it will work just fine. Nutrients will be locked in and it'll still be nice and uniform (even if its a little soggy!). It'll probably decompose quite quickly once you've applied it as a mulch though. Id be interested to know how it goes.
7 years ago
You're right, Bokashi is nothing new. It's been around for years, although it is becoming more and more popular.

Bokashi Composting is more of a fermentation process than a normal rotting process, so what you're left with at the end may not be the best for a mulch. After a couple of weeks of fermenting, the matter usually needs another couple of weeks buried, or in a worm composter to break down fully.

As you say, there is no need to buy the ready made "Bokashi bran". You can make your own. I can't find the link now, but search for "newspaper bokashi" and you should find some interesting results. There are a few sites out there which offer step by step guides to making your own.
7 years ago