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Post by Hairyloon on 8th June 2010, 5:23 pm

My friends compost bin has become decidedly smelly of late, which wouldn't be a problem if it wasn't next to the neighbours garden path.
But it is, and there is not really anywhere else it can go, so any ideas how to deal with it?
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Post by Dandelion on 8th June 2010, 5:36 pm

What kind of bin is it in? If it's in a plastic 'dalek' bin, the compost can be damp and smelly because of lack of air. The remedy might include to turn it all out on a dry day, let the air get to it, mix in some 'brown' items (eg scunched up paper, ripped up card, twiggy material, straw) before putting it back.
Is there cooked food in there which is smelling?
Sometimes when I've suffered from a smelly heap (not nice!) I've given up and used it in a runner bean trench covered with soil - at least it doesn't go to waste, and the smell is covered up!

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Post by chickenofthewoods on 8th June 2010, 6:30 pm

Cooked food waste should'nt go into a compost bin (although a Green Johanna is ok for cooked stuff). Is it in full sun? Sounds like it needs a good mix up as Dandelion suggests.

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Post by Mike on 9th June 2010, 6:32 pm

It's not a matter of being cooked or not which makes the difference.

What matters is meat (even raw) or cooked with too much oil mixed in. By and large cooked vegeatble matter is digested by the organisms just fine. Were than not so, no beer (the malted grain is cooked to kill it, then the yeast added. In this case an anaerobe (the yeast) but if the heat killed malted grain were just moistened instead of being drowned in water the aerobes would have a go).

Smelly means being digested by anaerobes which means not enough oxygen which usually means too wet or too compacted.

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