All you ever wanted to know about Compost Science:
From it’s origins, the object and reasoning behind the manufacture, to it’s uses and efficient exploitation.
What is Compost Science?
Whilst regarded as natural, composting is no more natural than the agricultural systems it supports. That does not mean it is unnatural, but just as fields do not plough themselves so compost heaps do not spontaneously construct themselves either. So whilst it is a biological process using and manipulating naturally occurring organisms it is still a manufactured product; one that results when another organism (usually man) deliberately gathers up material and so constructs it to encourage a rapid explosion of specific micro-organisms to take place. As a discipline compost science is rather like brewing or bread making; only much more complex. What is Compost?
The benefits of Composting are several fold and whilst one could argue that any one is sufficient reason to compost the true benefit of composting is in the suite of solutions it provides to the grower, gardener and horticulturist. Whether one is interested in waste reduction, nutrient capture or soil fertility at the local scale or, at the global in contributing towards biodiversity or sequestering atmospheric carbon: Composting is part of the solution. Why Compost?
Principles of Compost Manufacture.
Beginning with the origin and principles behind the construction of the compost container; the essential methodology of compost manufacture is explained in terms relative to the environmental conditions that need to be created. Location and proximity with respect to access and water sources are similarly discussed. The explanation is provided to complement existing compost science and composting web sites by providing composters with a better understanding of the processes they are trying to encourage. Building a compost containers
Compost Science Architecture
Following on from the essential properties of the compost container these pages explain the mechanisms and internal conditions, the ‘Compost Architecture’ that needs to be created and maintained to encourage a rapid and thorough proliferation of thermophillic bacteria. Building the heaps architecture
Whether it’s basic soil amendment, manufacturing potting composts or the extraction of Aqueous Compost Extracts (A.C.E) we have all the guides you need to manufacture and calculate the benefits of your compost products. Utilising compost
There’s tons on compost and compost science out there and most of it from a practical perspective is good. What we hope to achieve here is a useful resource to support that literature. So as I find the better composting sites I will add them here and in the links and publications pages.
Organic Gardening.Com A huge site with loads of related resources but the compost pages are particularly good
Free Cultural Works (CC-BY-NC-SA) Malcolm McEwen 2011