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Banana Plant Soil, Additives, and Fertilizer This forum is an area where you may discuss the soil to grow banana plants in, as well as soil additives such as teas, composts, manures, fertilizers and related topics.


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Old 08-29-2009, 01:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default Compost materials???

I was wondering if you could use saw dust as a material for composting. I recently purchased an electric planer and I'm knee deep in shavings. I'd hate to just throw it away if it compostable. For now it's just pine. As long as it's not treated lumber it should be usable correct?

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Old 08-29-2009, 01:40 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Cool Re: Compost materials???

Good question. I have heard that this will work with hardwood shavings but not sure about the pine. It should be worth a try at least, I have no idea what the resulting compost would be like or if it might be very acid. It couldn't hurt to try an experimental pile and see what you get. A soil test from cooperative extension is only $8 last I had one done. This might help you determine if it's something you'd want to add to your edible garden. Definitely let us know what you come up with.
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Old 08-29-2009, 02:01 PM   #3 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Compost materials???

Yes you can use saw dust / wood shavings as long as the wood is not pressure treated. I use horse manure which is mixed with pine shavings and it seems to break down just fine. And the worms also eat the pine shavings so I say yes, just remember never too much of one thing in the pile.
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Old 08-29-2009, 02:03 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Compost materials???

Hello r3tic;
Depending on the type of pine, Shortleaf pine is an important source of turpentine. Western Hemlock is a source of tannic acid used for tanning leather. This may help you out.

But I agree with bob, try an experimental patch if you are in doubt.

Like Worm Farmer states, worms are very helpful with the decomposition of wood chips or shavings.
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Old 08-29-2009, 05:16 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Compost materials???

Saw dust works fine for compost but be aware that the carbon to nitrogen ratio is very high which means it will take a while to break down to a usable level. If applied too early, it will lock up nitrogen.
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Old 08-29-2009, 06:00 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Compost materials???

I heard it uses a lot of nitrogen to break down.
Beware of black walnut...It'll cause more harm than good. I had a friend who had a lathe for turning wood & he gave me his shavings - except B walnut. Great mulch for the garden.
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Old 08-30-2009, 10:09 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Compost materials???

Someone posted this on another forum last year. The person stated it was information copied from one of his gardening books. Anyways, here are NPK values for commonly used compost ingredients:

Alfalfa Hay: 2.45/05/2.1
Apple Fruit: 0.05/0.02/0.1
Apple Leaves: 1.0/0.15/0.4
Apple Pomace: 0.2/0.02/0.15
Apple skins(ash) : 0/3.0/11/74
Banana Residues (ash): 1.75/0.75/0.5
Barley (grain): 0/0/0.5
Barley (straw): 0/0/1.0
Basalt Rock: 0/0/1.5
Bat Guano: 5.0-8.0/4.0-5.0/1.0
Beans, garden(seed and hull): 0.25/0.08/03
Beet Wastes: 0.4/0.4/0.7-4.1
Blood meal: 15.0/0/0
Bone Black: 1.5/0/0
Bonemeal (raw): 3.3-4.1/21.0/0.2
Bonemeal (steamed): 1.6-2.5/21.0/0.2
Brewery Wastes (wet): 1.0/0.5/0.05
Buckwheat straw: 0/0/2.0
Cantaloupe Rinds (ash): 0/9.77/12.0
Castor pomace: 4.0-6.6/1.0-2.0/1.0-2.0
Cattail reeds and water lily stems: 2.0/0.8/3.4
Cattail Seed: 0.98/0.25/0.1
Cattle Manure (fresh): 0.29/0.25/0.1
Cherry Leaves: 0.6/0/0.7
Chicken Manure (fresh): 1.6/1.0-1.5/0.6-1.0
Clover: 2/0/0/0 (also contains calcium)
Cocoa Shell Dust: 1.0/1.5/1.7
Coffee Grounds: 2.0/0.36/0.67
Corn (grain): 1.65/0.65/0.4
Corn (green forage): 0.4/0.13/0.33
Corn cobs: 0/0/2.0
Corn Silage: 0.42/0/0
Cornstalks: 0.75/0/0.8
Cottonseed hulls (ash): 0/8.7/23.9
Cottonseed Meal: 7.0/2.0-3.0/1.8
Cotton Wastes (factory): 1.32/0.45/0.36
Cowpea Hay: 3.0/0/2.3
Cowpeas (green forage): 0.45/0.12/0.45
Cowpeas (seed): 3.1/1.0/1.2
Crabgrass (green): 0.66/0.19/0.71
Crabs (dried, ground): 10.0/0/0 (I personally just crush the shells with my foot)
Crabs (fresh): 5.0/3.6/0.2
Cucumber Skins (ash): 0/11.28/27.2 ( WOW!!!! Who knew???)
Dried Blood: 10.0-14.0/1.0-5.0/0
Duck Manure (fresh): 1.12/1.44/0.6
Eggs: 2.25/0.4/0.15
Eggshells: 1.19/0.38/0.14
Feathers: 15.3/0/0
Felt Wastes: 14.0/0/1.0
Field Beans (seed): 4.0/1.2/1.3
Feild Beans (shells): 1.7/0.3/1.3
Fish (dried, ground): 8.0/7.0/0
Fish Scraps (fresh): 6.5/3.75/0
Gluten Meal: 6.4/0/0
Granite Dust: 0/0/3.0-5.5
Grapefruit Skins (ash): 0/3.6/30.6 (And people throw these things away? Wow!)
Grape Leaves: 0.45/0.1/0.4
Grape Pomace: 1.0/0.07/0.3
Grass (imature): 1.0/0/1.2
Greensand: 0/1.5/7.0
Hair: 14/0/0/0
Hoof and Horn Meal: 12.5/2.0/0
Horse Manure (fresh): 0.44/0.35/0.3
Incinerator Ash: 0.24/5.15/2.33
Jellyfish (dried): 4.6/0/0
Kentucky Bluegrass (green): 0.66/0.19/0.71
Kentucky Bluegrass (hay): 1.2/0.4/2.0
Leather Dust: 11.0/0/0
Lemon Culls: 0.15/0.06/0.26
Lemon Skins (ash): 06.33/1.0
Lobster Refuse: 4.5/3.5/0
Milk: 0.5/0.3/0.18
Millet Hay: 1.2/0/3.2
Molasses Residue
(From alcohol manufacture): 0.7/0/5.32
Molasses Waste
(From Sugar refining): 0/0/3.0-4.0
Mud (fresh water): 1.37/0.26/0.22
Mud (harbour): 0.99/0.77/0.05
Mud (salt): 0.4.0/0
Mussels: 1.0/0.12/0.13
Nutshells: 2.5/0/0
Oak Leaves: 0.8/0.35/0.2
Oats (grain): 2.0/0.8/0.6
Oats (green fodder): 0.49/0/0
Oat straw: 0/0/1.5
Olive Pomace: 1.15/0.78/1.3
Orange Culls: 0.2/0.13/0.21
Orange Skins: 0/3.0/27.0 (Right up there with Grapefruit. Note: both can attract fruit flies so, bury them in the compost)
Oyster Shells: 0.36/0/0
Peach Leaves: 0.9/0.15/0.6
Pea forage: 1.5-2.5/0/1.4
Peanuts (seed/kernals): 3.6/0.7/0.45
Peanut Shells: 3.6/0.15/0.5 (I grind them up in the food processor first)
Pea Pods (ash): 0/3.0/9.0 (I cut them up with a pair of scissors while shelling them)
Pea (vines): 0.25/0/0.7
Pear Leaves: 0.7/0/0.4
Pigeon manure (fresh): 4.19/2.24/1.0
Pigweed (rough): 0.6/0.1/0
Pine Needles: 0.5/0.12/0.03
Potato Skins (ash): 0/5.18/27.5
Potaote Tubers: 0.35/0.15/2.5
Potatoe Vines (dried): 0.6/0.16/1.6
Prune Refuse: 0.18/0.07/0.31
Pumpkins (fresh): 0.16/0.07/0.26
Rabbitbrush (ash): 0/0/13.04
Rabbit Manure: 2.4/1.4/0.6
Ragweed: 0.76/0.26/0
Rapeseed meal: 0/1.0=2.0/1.0=3.0
Raspberry leaves: 1.45/0/0.6
Red clover hay: 2.1/0.6/2.1
Redrop Hay: 1.2/0.35/1.0
Rock and Mussel Deposits
From Ocean: 0.22/0.09/1.78
Roses (flowers): 0.3/0.1/0.4
Rye Straw: 0/0/1.0
Salt March Hay: 1.1/0.25/0.75
Sardine Scrap: 8.0/7.1/0
Seaweed (dried): 1.1-1.5/0.75/4.9 (Seaweed is loaded with micronutrients including: Boron, Iodine, Magnesium and so on.)
Seaweed (fresh): 0.2-0.4/0/0
Sheep and Goat Manure (fresh): 0.55/0.6/0.3
Shoddy and Felt: 8.0/0/0
Shrimp Heads (dried): 7.8/4.2/0
Shrimp Wastes: 2.9/10.0/0
Siftings From Oyster Shell Mounds: 0.36/10.38/0.09
Silk Mill Wastes: 8.0/1.14/1.0
Silkworm Cocoons:10.0/1.82/1.08
Sludge: 2.0/1.9/0.3
Sludge (activated): 5.0/2.5-4.0/0.6
Smokehouse/Firepit Ash/0/4.96 (I put the ashes from my smoker in the pile)
Sorghum Straw/0/1.0
Soybean Hay: 1.5-3.0/0/1.2-2.3
Starfish: 1.8/0.2/0.25 (I'm not saying: "Go out and decimate starfish populations at our local beaches" but, the odd starfish would be okay. Incidentally, the edndoskeletons of starfish are made of Calcium Carbonate which, is slow to break down.)
String Beans (strings and stems, ash): 0/4.99/18.0 (Why we throw this stuff away? I have no idea. Look at all that potash!)
Sugar Wastes (raw): 2.0/8.0/0
Sweet Potatoes: 0.25/0.1/0.5
Swine Manure (fresh): 0.6/0.45/0.5
Tanbark Ash: 0/0.34/3.8
Tanbark Ash (spent): 0/1.75/2.0
Tankage: 3.0-11.0/2.0-5.0/0
Tea Grounds: 4.15/0.62/0.4
Timothy Hay: 1.2/0.55/1.4
Tobacco Leaves: 4.0/0.5/6.0
Tobacco Stems: 2.5-3.7/0.6-0.9/4.5-7.0
Tomatoe Fruit: 0.2/0.07/0.35 (A note on tomatoe fruit: These should be hot composted. I just let any rotted or insect eaten tomatoes compost in the soil beneath the plants and have "freebees" come back each consecutive year. Hot composting will kill the seeds.)
Tomatoe Leaves: 0.35/0.1/0.4
Tomatoe Stalks: 0.35/0.1/0.5
Tung Oil Pumace: 6.1/0/0
Vetch Hay: 2.8/0/2.3
Waste Silt: 9.5/0/0
Wheat Bran: 2.4/2.9/1.6
Wheat (grain): 2.0/0.85/0.5
Wheat Straw: 0.5/0.15/0.8
White Clover (Green): 0.5/0.2/0.3
Winter Rye Hay: 0/0/1.0
Wood Ash: 0/1.0-2.0/6.0-10.0 (A note on Wood ash: Wood Ash can contain chemicals that could harm plants and also carcinogens so, they should be composted in moderation)
Wool Wastes: 3.5-6.0/2.0-4.0/1.0-3

I cannot comment as to it's authenticity and of course it is not complete...but I think it's a good start.
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Old 08-30-2009, 04:42 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Compost materials???

I would assume it would work just fine so long as it isn't treated with chemicals. Like worm_farmer said, though, make sure to compliment the pile with other things so it's not JUST wood shavings.
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Old 08-30-2009, 05:23 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Compost materials???

Wood shaving take a long time to breakdown, but old sawdust piles are highly sought after for mulch and potting material. Addition of nutrients or other materials with higher nutrient levels will speed up composting.
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Old 10-06-2009, 02:02 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Compost materials???

Picked up a couple bags of coffee grounds from starbucks today. They package them so nicely for you, vacuum sealed and everything. Nothing on the packaging about returning or recycling the packaging...
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