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Composting for dummies

Author: Cathy Cromell; National Gardening Association (U.S.)
Publisher: Hoboken, NJ : Wiley, 2010.
Series: --For dummies.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
Overview: Back-to-basics gardening that will benefit the earth and your wallet! Want to use ordinary waste to create an extraordinary garden? Composting lets you turn household food waste, yard clippings, and more into free compost and mulch that's chock-full of nutrients. From building and working with traditional compost bins to starting an indoor worm-composting operation, Composting For Dummies makes these  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Popular works
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Cathy Cromell; National Gardening Association (U.S.)
ISBN: 9780470581612 0470581611
OCLC Number: 463637871
Notes: Includes index.
Description: xiv, 200 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.
Contents: Introduction --
About this book --
Conventions used in this book --
What you're not to read --
Foolish assumptions --
How this book is organized --
Part 1: Composting basics --
Part 2: Selecting a home and method for your compost --
Part 3: Compost happens --
Part 4: Expanding your compost horizons --
Part 5: Part of tens --
Icons used in this book --
Where to go form here --
Part 1: Composting Basics --
Chapter 1: Digging into compost --
Welcome to the world of compost --
What compost is --
What tools and equipment you need --
How composting works --
You can do it! Home composting made easy --
Some like it hot! --
Cool customers --
Reaping the rewards of composting --
Healthier, more prolific garden --
Healthier community and planet --
Chapter 2: Tools Of The Trade --
Protecting yourself from the elements: safety gear --
Getting a good pair of gloves --
Shielding your eyes --
Donning a dust mask --
Blocking harmful rays with a hat and sunscreen --
Choosing the right tools and equipment for the job --
Mixing things up with a pitchfork or compost fork --
Digging in with a soil fork --
Getting the lowdown on shovels and spades --
Investing in a good-quality hose --
Moving compost in buckets or tarps --
Hauling compost with wheelbarrows or garden carts --
Additional gadgets and tools for the enthusiastic composter --
Testing your compost's temperature --
Aerating your compost --
Considering chopping tools --
Tool-buying tips --
How does it feel? --
How's it made? --
Showing you tools some TLC --
Giving everything a quick cleaning --
Maintaining wooden handles --
Chapter 3: Decomposition Process --
Decomp 101: How rotting works --
Going to pieces: the physical breakup --
Freeing the nutrients: the chemical breakdown --
Maintaining balance through the food web --
Who's doing the hard work? --
Counting on chemical decomposers --
Profiting from physical decomposers --
Creating a productive work environment --
Rationing the carbons and nitrogen's --
Sizing down particles --
Managing moisture and air --
Tuning the temperature --
Part 2: Selecting A Home And Method For Your Compost --
Chapter 4: Composting aboveground or underground: no bin required --
Composting without a container --
Issue of air: aerobic versus anaerobic composting --
Aerobic composting: keeping everything aboveground --
Anaerobic decomposition: working without air underground --
Creating a pile aboveground --
Where to site the pile --
Aboveground composting in a few simple steps --
When your compost will be ready to use --
Digging a hole (pit or trench composting) --
Where to site the hole --
Pit composting in a few simple steps --
When your compost will be ready to use --
Keeping your binless compost critter-free --
Chapter 5: Working With Compost Containers --
Composting in a container (or two or three) --
When using containers is best --
Sorting out your composting style --
Checking out your options --
Taking a turn with tumblers --
Bins of all types --
Kitchen composters --
Keeping wildlife out of your container --
Eliminating enticing ingredients --
Using bin characteristics to exclude creatures --
Bugs, ants, and flies, oh my! --
Shopping for a composter: a buyer's guide --
Chapter 6: Erecting Your Own Compost Containers --
Transforming recycled items into inexpensive containers --
Wood shipping pallets --
Recycled garbage can --
Building bins with wire, bales, or wood --
Hardware cloth circular wire bin --
Poultry wire circular bin --
Straw-bale bin --
Wood and wire three-bin composter --
Part 3: Compost Happens --
Chapter 7: Selecting Your Ingredients --
Getting down with browns: carbon-rich ingredients --
Dry leaves --
Woody plant trimmings --
Paper products --
Straw --
Pine needles --
Sawdust --
Greening it up: nitrogen-rich ingredients --
Kitchen scraps --
Grass clippings --
Leafy plant trimmings, spent flower, herbs, and vegetables --
Weeds-foliage only! --
Livestock manure --
Pet bedding --
Feathers --
Hair and fur --
Hay --
Using the right ratio of carbon to nitrogen ingredients --
Knowing which materials to avoid --
Getting your hands on compostable materials --
Stockpiling your own organic matter --
Rounding up free organic matter --
Chapter 8: Mixing Up A Batch: A Step-By-Step Guide --
Deciding on location --
Choosing a convenient site --
Climate considerations --
Creating your pile --
Finding the pile size that's just right --
To chop or not to chop: adding small or large chunks --
Aerating made easy --
Piling on the layers-and watering as your work --
Tending to the compost pile --
Turning your compost pile --
Adding water --
When is it finished-and why does it matter? --
Surveying different approaches to making compost --
Basic compost for laid-back gardeners --
Speedier compost --
Compost for type-A personalities --
Fine three-bin compost --
Compost smoothie, anyone? --
Chapter 9: Using Your Finished Compost --
Enriching vegetable and flower beds --
Knowing how often to add compost to garden beds --
Figuring out how much compost is enough on beds --
Using compost to mulch landscape plants and trees --
Top-dressing lawns --
Screening compost for containers --
Making a compost screen --
Screening small and large amounts of compost --
Using screened compost in container plantings --
Finding other uses for finished compost --
Brewing (and using) compost tea --
Growing plants directly on the pile --
Combining homemade with store-bought compost --
Purchasing bags of compost --
Buying in bulk --
Part 4: Expanding Your Compost Horizons --
Chapter 10: Working With Worms --
Vermicomposting in a nutshell --
Meet the squirmy stars of the show --
Compositing worm species --
Obtaining composting worms --
Hooking up the housing and bedding --
How much room do your worms need? --
Building your own worm abode --
Opting for a manufactured worm bin --
Making the bed --
Introducing worms to their new home --
Chow time! Feeding your worms --
What's on the menu --
To chop or not to chop (again) --
Maintaining your worms' comfort zone --
Light --
Temperature --
Moisture --
Breathing room --
pH levels --
Tackling problems with your worm bin --
Odor --
Mites --
Dying worms --
What worms contribute to your compost: the casting call --
Harvesting vermicompost --
Using vermicompost --
Chapter 11: Adding Cover Crops And Green Manures --
Recognizing the value of cover crops and green manures --
Preventing erosion --
Adding organic matter --
Reducing soil compaction --
Improving tilth --
Creating and adding nitrogen --
Feeding beneficial insects --
Inhibiting weed growth --
Surveying your cover crop choices --
Legumes --
Grasses --
Other cover crops --
Planting and turning over cover crops --
Sowing seasons --
Mixing your mature cover crop into the soil --
To till or not to till --
Chapter 12: Composting In Sheets --
Sheet composting: read all about it --
Pros and cons --
Where and when to lay sheets of compost --
Getting down to ingredients --
Sheet composting and gardening in one step --
Building garden soil --
Planting in sheet compost beds --
Planting next year's garden --
Part 5: Part O Tens --
Chapter 13: Ten Answers To Common Questions About Compost --
What is compost, really? --
What are browns and greens? --
Can I compost all my kitchen scraps? What about pet waste? --
Do I have to purchase a container to compost? --
Do I have to turn compost regularly? --
How long before organic matter becomes compost? --
How do I know when my compost is ready to use? --
Can't I just send my yard and household waste to a landfill to decompose? --
Can I compost in winter? --
Can I use compost instead of fertilizer? --
Chapter 14: Ten Tips For Troubleshooting Compost --
Slow decomposition --
Hovering swarms of teeny flies --
Fat, white grubs --
Dead vermicomposting worms --
Lots of bugs crawling about --
Ammonia odor --
Rotten egg odor --
Slurry-like compost --
Eek! A mouse in the compost --
Animals scattering compost --
Index.
Series Title: --For dummies.
Responsibility: by Cathy Cromell and the editors of the National Gardening Association.

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<p>Discover how easy it is to master composting  Read more...

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schema:description"Introduction -- About this book -- Conventions used in this book -- What you're not to read -- Foolish assumptions -- How this book is organized -- Part 1: Composting basics -- Part 2: Selecting a home and method for your compost -- Part 3: Compost happens -- Part 4: Expanding your compost horizons -- Part 5: Part of tens -- Icons used in this book -- Where to go form here -- Part 1: Composting Basics -- Chapter 1: Digging into compost -- Welcome to the world of compost -- What compost is -- What tools and equipment you need -- How composting works -- You can do it! Home composting made easy -- Some like it hot! -- Cool customers -- Reaping the rewards of composting -- Healthier, more prolific garden -- Healthier community and planet -- Chapter 2: Tools Of The Trade -- Protecting yourself from the elements: safety gear -- Getting a good pair of gloves -- Shielding your eyes -- Donning a dust mask -- Blocking harmful rays with a hat and sunscreen -- Choosing the right tools and equipment for the job -- Mixing things up with a pitchfork or compost fork -- Digging in with a soil fork -- Getting the lowdown on shovels and spades -- Investing in a good-quality hose -- Moving compost in buckets or tarps -- Hauling compost with wheelbarrows or garden carts -- Additional gadgets and tools for the enthusiastic composter -- Testing your compost's temperature -- Aerating your compost -- Considering chopping tools -- Tool-buying tips -- How does it feel? -- How's it made? -- Showing you tools some TLC -- Giving everything a quick cleaning -- Maintaining wooden handles -- Chapter 3: Decomposition Process -- Decomp 101: How rotting works -- Going to pieces: the physical breakup -- Freeing the nutrients: the chemical breakdown -- Maintaining balance through the food web -- Who's doing the hard work? -- Counting on chemical decomposers -- Profiting from physical decomposers -- Creating a productive work environment -- Rationing the carbons and nitrogen's -- Sizing down particles -- Managing moisture and air -- Tuning the temperature -- Part 2: Selecting A Home And Method For Your Compost -- Chapter 4: Composting aboveground or underground: no bin required -- Composting without a container -- Issue of air: aerobic versus anaerobic composting -- Aerobic composting: keeping everything aboveground -- Anaerobic decomposition: working without air underground -- Creating a pile aboveground -- Where to site the pile -- Aboveground composting in a few simple steps -- When your compost will be ready to use -- Digging a hole (pit or trench composting) -- Where to site the hole -- Pit composting in a few simple steps -- When your compost will be ready to use -- Keeping your binless compost critter-free -- Chapter 5: Working With Compost Containers -- Composting in a container (or two or three) -- When using containers is best -- Sorting out your composting style -- Checking out your options -- Taking a turn with tumblers -- Bins of all types -- Kitchen composters -- Keeping wildlife out of your container -- Eliminating enticing ingredients -- Using bin characteristics to exclude creatures -- Bugs, ants, and flies, oh my! -- Shopping for a composter: a buyer's guide -- Chapter 6: Erecting Your Own Compost Containers -- Transforming recycled items into inexpensive containers -- Wood shipping pallets -- Recycled garbage can -- Building bins with wire, bales, or wood -- Hardware cloth circular wire bin -- Poultry wire circular bin -- Straw-bale bin -- Wood and wire three-bin composter -- Part 3: Compost Happens -- Chapter 7: Selecting Your Ingredients -- Getting down with browns: carbon-rich ingredients -- Dry leaves -- Woody plant trimmings -- Paper products -- Straw -- Pine needles -- Sawdust -- Greening it up: nitrogen-rich ingredients -- Kitchen scraps -- Grass clippings -- Leafy plant trimmings, spent flower, herbs, and vegetables -- Weeds-foliage only! -- Livestock manure -- Pet bedding -- Feathers -- Hair and fur -- Hay -- Using the right ratio of carbon to nitrogen ingredients -- Knowing which materials to avoid -- Getting your hands on compostable materials -- Stockpiling your own organic matter -- Rounding up free organic matter -- Chapter 8: Mixing Up A Batch: A Step-By-Step Guide -- Deciding on location -- Choosing a convenient site -- Climate considerations -- Creating your pile -- Finding the pile size that's just right -- To chop or not to chop: adding small or large chunks -- Aerating made easy -- Piling on the layers-and watering as your work -- Tending to the compost pile -- Turning your compost pile -- Adding water -- When is it finished-and why does it matter? -- Surveying different approaches to making compost -- Basic compost for laid-back gardeners -- Speedier compost -- Compost for type-A personalities -- Fine three-bin compost -- Compost smoothie, anyone? --"@en
schema:description"Overview: Back-to-basics gardening that will benefit the earth and your wallet! Want to use ordinary waste to create an extraordinary garden? Composting lets you turn household food waste, yard clippings, and more into free compost and mulch that's chock-full of nutrients. From building and working with traditional compost bins to starting an indoor worm-composting operation, Composting For Dummies makes these often intimidating projects easy, fun, and accessible for anyone! Digging into compost basics - get a handle on the benefits of composting and the tools you'll need to get started; Choosing the best method and location; find the best composting method and location that's right for you, whether it's above ground, in a hole, in a container or bin, or even right in your kitchen; Building your pile - learn which ingredients can go into your compost pile, what stays out, and how to mix it all up in the right proportions; Stepping beyond traditional composting; get the lowdown on vermicomposting (letting worms eat your garbage), growing green manures to compost later, and sheet composting in the same spot you plan to plant. Open the book and find: A step-by-step guide to composting; The right gear and tools for the job; Tips on constructing your own composting containers and bins; Materials you can safely compost (and those to avoid); Cover crops to improve your soil now and compost later; Recommendations for using your finished compost; What worms contribute to your compost; Troubleshooting advice if your compost pile isn't cooperating; Learn to: Turn household food waste, yard clippings, and more into nutrient-rich compost; Build and maintain your own compost bin; Use worms to aid in composting, both indoors and out; Give your vegetable and flower gardens a boost of energy."@en
schema:description"Chapter 9: Using Your Finished Compost -- Enriching vegetable and flower beds -- Knowing how often to add compost to garden beds -- Figuring out how much compost is enough on beds -- Using compost to mulch landscape plants and trees -- Top-dressing lawns -- Screening compost for containers -- Making a compost screen -- Screening small and large amounts of compost -- Using screened compost in container plantings -- Finding other uses for finished compost -- Brewing (and using) compost tea -- Growing plants directly on the pile -- Combining homemade with store-bought compost -- Purchasing bags of compost -- Buying in bulk -- Part 4: Expanding Your Compost Horizons -- Chapter 10: Working With Worms -- Vermicomposting in a nutshell -- Meet the squirmy stars of the show -- Compositing worm species -- Obtaining composting worms -- Hooking up the housing and bedding -- How much room do your worms need? -- Building your own worm abode -- Opting for a manufactured worm bin -- Making the bed -- Introducing worms to their new home -- Chow time! Feeding your worms -- What's on the menu -- To chop or not to chop (again) -- Maintaining your worms' comfort zone -- Light -- Temperature -- Moisture -- Breathing room -- pH levels -- Tackling problems with your worm bin -- Odor -- Mites -- Dying worms -- What worms contribute to your compost: the casting call -- Harvesting vermicompost -- Using vermicompost -- Chapter 11: Adding Cover Crops And Green Manures -- Recognizing the value of cover crops and green manures -- Preventing erosion -- Adding organic matter -- Reducing soil compaction -- Improving tilth -- Creating and adding nitrogen -- Feeding beneficial insects -- Inhibiting weed growth -- Surveying your cover crop choices -- Legumes -- Grasses -- Other cover crops -- Planting and turning over cover crops -- Sowing seasons -- Mixing your mature cover crop into the soil -- To till or not to till -- Chapter 12: Composting In Sheets -- Sheet composting: read all about it -- Pros and cons -- Where and when to lay sheets of compost -- Getting down to ingredients -- Sheet composting and gardening in one step -- Building garden soil -- Planting in sheet compost beds -- Planting next year's garden -- Part 5: Part O Tens -- Chapter 13: Ten Answers To Common Questions About Compost -- What is compost, really? -- What are browns and greens? -- Can I compost all my kitchen scraps? What about pet waste? -- Do I have to purchase a container to compost? -- Do I have to turn compost regularly? -- How long before organic matter becomes compost? -- How do I know when my compost is ready to use? -- Can't I just send my yard and household waste to a landfill to decompose? -- Can I compost in winter? -- Can I use compost instead of fertilizer? -- Chapter 14: Ten Tips For Troubleshooting Compost -- Slow decomposition -- Hovering swarms of teeny flies -- Fat, white grubs -- Dead vermicomposting worms -- Lots of bugs crawling about -- Ammonia odor -- Rotten egg odor -- Slurry-like compost -- Eek! A mouse in the compost -- Animals scattering compost -- Index."@en
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