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by Rose Eilenberg

On Monday, March 5, the recycling interns recovered our first batch of compost from the new ComposTumbler. We are so excited that we have had such a positive response – the bin is filling up so fast!

As you can see, the compost didn’t even have time to finish its decomposition process before the bin had to be emptied. While this could potentially be a problem, there are two things that should be considered. The first is that this was occurring during weather that was a bit colder than the optimal temperature. If today’s (beautiful!) weather is any indication, we are headed towards warmer days which will be well above the point that it stops being practical to compost- around 40 ° F. The second aspect is something that all of those who contribute material to the bin can do to help the process along. If everyone were to chop up their organic material before adding it to the bin (it doesn’t have to be perfect or in tiny) it would do a lot to speed up the process. All organic matter will eventually decay, but what the ComposTumber does is provide a controlled environment that encourages the decomposition process and provides a nice friendly atmosphere for millions of bacteria that aid in decay. When you add material that is in small pieces, it significantly increases the surface area or the material, which allows the bacteria and microbes more and easier access, increasing the rate of decomposition.

We look forward to more batches of compost in the future, and to perfecting our method to create the best possible compost!