Gardening Journal

Steel Barrel Composting

We’re trying out a new composting system, this year.

This system makes use of 55 gallon steel barrels.  We’ve got them all lined up along the back fence of our property.  They are ready to be loaded up with various compostables from the kitchen and garden, and then we’ll let the magical process begin.

steel barrels

We’re hoping that, by using the steel barrels, we’ll be able to speed up the process of decomposition, and get to the finished product much faster than we ever have in the past.

The barrels will be loaded, in layers, with brown material (dead plants, leaves, saw dust, hay), green material (fresh weeds, grass clippings, kitchen scraps), chicken manure, and garden soil.

We’ve decided not to poke holes into the barrels, but will instead aerate the contents by rolling the barrels around, every day.  We still need to build a track for the barrels to roll on.  The idea is to lay the barrels on their sides, all in a row, on the track, and then roll them all at the same time to the end of the track, so that they make about six to seven revolutions per day.

We’re hoping to achieve finished compost in as little as 4 weeks time, if everything goes well.  We’ll keep you (com)posted! 😉

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