What are Compost Activators
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Ed Bruske explains the benefits of composting, and what are compost activators


Hi, my name is Ed Bruske with DC Urban Gardeners. We’re here in my garden in the District of Columbia talking about composting and you maybe wondering what I was just sprinkling on my compost pile here. Well this is an old composter’s trick. This is some Dog food that I ground up in the food processor. Why would I put dog food on my compost pile? Well dog food is full of protein, protein is full of nitrogen, and nitrogen is what bacteria love to eat. So by putting nitrogen, more nitrogen into your pile, you get those bacteria working a lot faster. They heat the pile up, if you’re interested in hot composting. That would raise the temperature of your pile. Make a compost happen a lot faster, kill off weed seeds and any pathogens that might be in your compost. Now if you don’t have dog food, or you think that dog food is little silly, there are all kinds of other nitrogen that you can out in your pile to get that heating up hot effect, activating those bacteria. One of them we mentioned earlier is grass clipping, but grass clipping is actually kind of low in nitrogen compared to some other things like say, chicken manure. If you don’t have chicken manure, you can actually get kinds of, different kinds of meal from your garden center that have a high nitrogen content such as bone meal, which comes from a slaughter house process. Blood meal, some thing, that’s a recycled materials from slaughter house, Alfalfa meal, which would be more of a vegetarian or vegetable nitrogen source and all kinds of other plant meals that act as a booster to your compost pile. But again that’s only if you really want to get into hot composting and heat up that pile to make your compost happen lot faster. Now the next thing we’re going to talk about, is how you can use the scraps that you generate in your kitchen by cooking and recycle those in your compost pile and turn them into an amendment for your garden soil rather than sending them to the land fill.