Sunday, February 24, 2013

Composting in Outdoor Bath Tubs

The two women who live in the main house adjacent to my apartment have lived here for more than  a decade. There is a fiberglass bath tub outside my south window where they have been throwing their kitchen refuse for several years. On hot days, and when they dump several days worth of stuff at once it smells bad throughout my entire apartment. Last week I notified them that I prefer that the tub be moved elsewhere by the time really hot weather arrives. DA,  the older woman is in her 80's, and she can't help. Circe, is about my age and is flat out busy with craft fairs on weekends, and on week days busy with production. They told me they cannot take care of it any time soon. This response was actually not unanticipated. But, all of  a sudden, this problem became more acute this week. I had my first Sarasota buyer for one of my zafus, and they came to pick it up at my studio. 

At any rate, I received permission to find another home for the compost. Since it really was not my responsibility to begin with, it occurred to me that the easiest thing would be to have some other interested party come, dig it out and take it. So, I  placed an ad on craigslist. No takers so far - no surprise there. I mentioned there were red ants and possibly snakes to contend with. Guess that didn't help! Then I remembered a friend who does yard work/gardening who has a degree in some aspect of the gardening business. Called him...he's sortof interested, but stalling. Says he'll call this afternoon. Oh, I believe it, but I am also prepared for the fact that he just might keep stalling. I think he wants to be paid to remove it. This morning after meditating for about 30 minutes I felt invigorated and inspired enough to get my work shoes, long pants, shovel,  buckets and tubs. For fortification, I grabbed a few Chocolate Mint patties on my way out the door. Emptied the damn thing myself in a half an hour. Ahhh! Good clean air to breathe throughout the apartment...sweet!
Kitchen refuse in the Bath tub

Compost in Tubs and Buckets - ready to go!
 It seems that composting in bath tubs requires more than just dumping stuff in there. Any feedback based on experience is welcome!

So far, my one response from the craigslist ad hasn't been...ah well, shall we say... ahem... too interested in the compost itself.

"Why don’t you just dig numerous holes throughout your yard and bury the compost.  Obviously you aren’t doing the GARDEN thing."

1 comment:

Valerie said...

Compost is a kind of living organism - it needs air. In a tub, the stuff is suffocating, ammonia builds up. It rots and makes mold. It will not make good soil until it is allowed to breathe. Even when a compost pile is just on the ground, it has to be poked and prodded now and then to let air in.
Maybe there are no worms in the tub. I know that you can do container composting in the house, but you need worms. And I think those containers are constructed in such a way as to let in some air.
Another cause of the stink is that there is too much of one kind of matter. You need the right mix of kitchen waste, grass, leaves, wood.