Susan Wakeman

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since Dec 06, 2013
Lake Geneva, Switzerland, Europe
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Recent posts by Susan Wakeman

What this means is that composting is climate neutral, not particularly good for the climate (despite the claims on the net). I suppose landfill is worse if it is uncapped  - they produce a lot of methane, which is a very potent greenhouse gas.
1 week ago
I'd like to know if any of you are aware of studies concerning greenhouse gases emitted by different forms of composting.

I read a study comparing different (commercial) composting techniques and biodigestion, capturing all biogas, was the best. Apparently even well aerated compost in heaps burps methane in intervals.

This worries me a bit. Maybe I am better off putting all my organic waste in the biogas-producing collection system?
1 week ago
Cauliflower usually has pointy leaves, broccoli round ones.
2 weeks ago
I'm on my second year of Johnson su compost. I don't add worms, they show up anyway.

I covered the inside of the wire surround with compost and the top with some mouldy cotton cushions. The result after about 6 months was brown very soft, aromatic compost I had never seen before. Used up with great success as potting soil.

This spring I built 3 JS composts, now half to two-thirds rotted down. I just put the remainder of the last heap on top for inoculation.

I transplant most of my veggies and this is my main way of getting good microbes to all my plot.
2 weeks ago
I've been very happy with the results of my Johnson su reactors. I put wire bins on top of pallettes, clad with cardboard. Fence poles removed after a day or so created the chimneys.
to keep them moist, I covered with some wool or old cotton cushions.
fine seed compost after a little less than a year without turning. The worms found their own way in. I add soil from healthy diverse biomesaas I build the piles for good microbes.
3 weeks ago
One of the downsides of composting is the emission of greenhouse gases!
Even a well aerated compost will burp methane in intervals, of course an anaerobic heap more so. I read a German comparison of different commercial compost methods and open composting such as we tend to practise in our backyards had the worst climate balance due to methane, the best being anaerobic digestion with capture of biogas. The study seemed quite thorough, including all infrastructure and transport.
so if your green waste goes to a biogas facility less than 50km away you'd be producing less climate gases by using the service than  by composting yourself!
I still don't.
1. I love feeding my chickens and garden.
2. The farm i garden at produces large quantities of asparagus waste in season. Using wood chips available on hand I make all my potting soil for the next season in Johnson su composers. The green waste service does not come to the farm. These heaps are also my source for compost tea.
3. The heaps I've got going allow me to compost chicken droppings and carcasses.
I will continue to teach compost making because it is an excellent tool to get people understand nutrient cycling and soil health.
3 weeks ago
Your posts have encouraged me to propose wine caps as a primary school project. We will put the spawn in when we mulch newly planted fruit bushes. In giving them some oyster mushroom spawn for a classroom project too. I love mushrooms! Best way to educate people to stop digging.
My nursery is the outside edges of the Polytunnel. Needed weighing down anyway and gets all the run off!
2 months ago
I' d been planning on putting out feelers into my community by inviting people that are allready involved in different initiatives in my town that might fit under this umbrella, to a pot luck and discussion. I don' t think that would be a good idea now. What would you do instead to get the ball rolling?
I don' t think that these busy people are looking for another thing on their plate, but I thought at least we could all get a bit better connected... and who knows, maybe unearth a handful that would like to do transition. So my first goal was simply to network existing initiatives and people involved, and look for synergies or recurring needs.
The challenge is that the easiest way to do this is for people meeting face to face which is not so easy these days.
2 months ago
Good questions. Following.
4 months ago
This guy uses hay to mulch and prepare a market garden in maine.
Edited for spelling.
5 months ago