Road Bike, Cycling Forums banner
1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
15,615 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Our new tradition is to spread compost on the lawn twice a year, spring and early fall. We get about one garbage can full after sifting, which is just enough to sprinkle on both laws, but not as much as recommended.

Wanting to get more aggressive (two people don't generate much waste), I asked an employee at the supermarket about taking home the stuff they were tossing out in the produce section- there's always somebody there trimming, sorting and tossing the less-than-perfect-looking stuff. "They'll charge ya," he said, so I went over to the Customer Service desk.

The woman at the desk informed me that they no longer give out the bad produce, because people bring it back and pretend it was purchased like that, and they demand a refund. :eek6:

My mouth dropped open. "Are you serious?! People DO that?! Can I sign a form or something.....??" Nope, but she agreed, it sucks that they have to toss it like all the other garbage, and it would be so much better to make use of it.

Was moping and losing all faith in humanity when I decided to hit up the juice place. Turns out they produce a ton of spent pulp every day and they're happy to give it out! :14:

So the past few days I've been calling them every morning, asking them to set it aside, and we pick it up after work- luckily they're open late.

The Earth Machine is nearly topped off, and we'll have to get this heated up and decomposing ASAP to get it on the lawn early enough (supposed to be the first couple of days of October, ideally, but we're a bit late.) The worms can hang out in the bottom half and eat/poop/fornicate to their hearts' content. :cool:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,415 Posts
The woman at the desk informed me that they no longer give out the bad produce, because people bring it back and pretend it was purchased like that, and they demand a refund. :eek6:
My sister used to be an assistant manager at Whole Paycheck. One individual would scrounge receipts from the trash cans outside the store. If the customer had paid in cash he would take the receipt, obtain the items from the shelf, and bring them to courtesy for a refund. The store wised up quickly.

I don't know how people could get away with a produce scam. I'll spare the details of one incident a decade ago, but supermarkets appear to have casino-level video capability at the registers.

Glad you got what you want elsewhere. I once needed boxes and the local liquor stores were happy to be rid of them.
 

·
n00bsauce
Joined
·
13,507 Posts
With that much soupy green stuff don't forget to add the brown stuff (leaves, etc.) in the green machine.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15,615 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
We have so many leaves from last year that we're only using them up now on this project. The giant sugar maple in our yard is a great supplier of browns. We could shred brown paper and newspaper if needed.

It's funny how much John has gotten into it too :p He built the new sifter "Tetanus Machine v2" out of 1/4" mesh, bike rims and casters. Makes the process a bit easier.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
912 Posts
Most Starbucks have big bags of used coffee grounds for composting available as well!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15,615 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Most Starbucks have big bags of used coffee grounds for composting available as well!
Yup, this is how we start from scratch. Get 20-30lbs of used coffee, mix with some browns and kitchen scraps. Worms love it and makes them extra-productive :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,449 Posts
Worms got nothing on black soldier fly larvae. If you are into the composting and vermiculture, you should look into BSFL. Very intersting stuff.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15,615 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Oh yeah, those BSFL are something else! Sometimes I find what appears to be BSFL in the pile, but not a ton of them. If we had chickens, I'd be more into "raising" them- have heard that BSFL is like crack for chickens. :p

In other news: There's a crew mulching a tree about half a mile from here, I'm tempted to go over with a bag and ask for some tree mulch. But do I have to tip them? Do they allow people to take mulch?
 

·
Boobies!
Joined
·
8,170 Posts
Oh yeah, those BSFL are something else! Sometimes I find what appears to be BSFL in the pile, but not a ton of them. If we had chickens, I'd be more into "raising" them- have heard that BSFL is like crack for chickens. :p

In other news: There's a crew mulching a tree about half a mile from here, I'm tempted to go over with a bag and ask for some tree mulch. But do I have to tip them? Do they allow people to take mulch?
A lot of the tree crews (city, utility or whatever) will generally give you mulch or wood, although they would likely be happier if they could dump a load rather than fill a bag...

I just came home to a full truck load of logs courtesy of your local telephone company..yikes!

Now I have to saw and split like a maniac!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15,615 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
We have more than the usual number of black soldier fly larvae in the heap. Scooped out a bunch and put them out for the birds..........no takers though in the past 24hrs :confused:

Thought for sure that a dish of big fat grubs would pertain to the interests of the woodpeckers and blue jays at least. Maybe they'll be gone by tonight, dunno.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15,615 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
My new thing lately is getting a ton of scraps and pulp from the juice/healthy take-out place up the block. Talk about a gold mine! Been loading up the Earth Machine to balance out the surplus of shredded leaves, but we still have 3/4 of a garbage can of leaves.

I've been piling on the wet stuff, slacked off a bit with the dry stuff just b/c the leaves are packed down a bit in the can and a minor PITA to remove.

Checked on the bin yesterday and noticed something oozing out the vent on the side, looked like an old omelet or something. I know that the juice place has been lazy about separating stuff out, but didn't think they threw stuff like that in there......

Checked inside and it turns out it's SLIME MOLD. :eek6: God dammit. I never had this before. Some Googling tells me it's nothing to worry about, it blooms and then goes away, but you can never eradicate it completely. It's good for breaking down pathogens, so there's that.

And here I thought my pile was so wonderfully maintained. Damn, you can't slack off for a moment though! It also wasn't smelling so good, so I shoveled/mixed in a bunch of leaves to mitigate the neglect.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
40,807 Posts
My new thing lately is getting a ton of scraps and pulp from the juice/healthy take-out place up the block. Talk about a gold mine! Been loading up the Earth Machine to balance out the surplus of shredded leaves, but we still have 3/4 of a garbage can of leaves.

I've been piling on the wet stuff, slacked off a bit with the dry stuff just b/c the leaves are packed down a bit in the can and a minor PITA to remove.

Checked on the bin yesterday and noticed something oozing out the vent on the side, looked like an old omelet or something. I know that the juice place has been lazy about separating stuff out, but didn't think they threw stuff like that in there......

Checked inside and it turns out it's SLIME MOLD. :eek6: God dammit. I never had this before. Some Googling tells me it's nothing to worry about, it blooms and then goes away, but you can never eradicate it completely. It's good for breaking down pathogens, so there's that.

And here I thought my pile was so wonderfully maintained. Damn, you can't slack off for a moment though! It also wasn't smelling so good, so I shoveled/mixed in a bunch of leaves to mitigate the neglect.
Weird your pile was getting stinky--that usually means something got in the mix that didn't belong, like animal fats/dairy product. A juice bar might be mixing in yogurt, or protein powder, or something like that. As you found out, it's really not a big deal, but it might make some of the neighborhood critters take an undue interest in it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15,615 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I'm a little depressed that the store is getting lazy- they're not separating out the pulp anymore, just mixing in a bunch of things, possibly not separating at all. I have to pick out plastic stuff now.

Then again, they're not getting paid enough to be bothered, though we do try to tip now and then. Guess it's fair that they considering it MY job, not that it should be THAT difficult to have a separate bag. :skep:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15,615 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Yup, got plenty of leaves to add. It's a bit full at the moment so I might have to wait a few days to add more leaves, let the worms do their thing.
 

·
Russian Troll Farmer
Joined
·
3,416 Posts
I found that leaves take a long time to break down, and then its more like sphagnum moss. I mulch most of my leaves first, then just pile some intact leaves on top, as an insulator for the winter.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15,615 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I found that leaves take a long time to break down, and then its more like sphagnum moss. I mulch most of my leaves first, then just pile some intact leaves on top, as an insulator for the winter.
Yup, used to put them in a can and mulch with a weed whacker, like a giant immersion blender. This was fun! But John decided it's better to use the electric lawn mower (cheaper than the fuel? not sure why he prefers the mower.)

So we pile up the leaves in the driveway and mow them into little bits. They're kept in a separate can (with drainage holes) next to the Machine, so we can throw them in as needed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,088 Posts
when I was first into composting, I ran everything thru a chipper / shredder and turned it into fine little bits...

degradation was speeded up considerably, but it was a dusty, noisy process and burning gasoline isn't very green.

now, the city provides 90-gal curbside bin for organics / yard wastes for their own composting endeavors, so the shredder isn't used any longer. the only thing that goes on my pile is kitchen wastes.

those things break down pretty quickly, so don't even bother to turn the pile any more, just throw a couple of shovelfuls of dirt on the top occasionally. low-effort is good.

with the warm weather this winter, will probably need to start top-dressing things soon...everything is in full bloom already.
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top