Tuesday, 1 July 2008

WHEN GOOD COMPOST GOES BAD


We all know what is and isn't supposed to go in a compost heap. Green waste, yes. Cat sick, no.




Slightly shocking to read this off Cleve West's blog, then. The idea that this chemical doesn't break down, even when it's been through animals and then rotted on a pile for months, is just so grim. 



It's not even the first creepy compost story I've heard about this week - a fellow Kew guide, Veronica, sent me this BBC report under the subject line Killer Compost.



But if by now you need a bit of cheering up, check this out. I for one hope that the new look Gardeners' World is going to have a lot more of this kind of thing.

10 comments:

VP said...

Spookily that came up as Matt Wilson's blog, do you think Mateus has a programming sideline in Cleveland?

Absolutely brilliant!!!!!!!!!

Saw CW's post too - rushed out to check my manure fed stuff tody, everything's OK there phew!

Alex said...

Treehugger has a post today on composting.
http://www.treehugger.com/files/2008/07/green_tips_humanure_composting.php

But it's not vegetation they're composting...

emmat said...

VP - i just was googling compost, and then I googled ken thompson compost, and then matthew wilson compost, in case i found something funny.... and I did.....

oh the marvellous, marvellous things you can find on Youtube. Human poo compost.

matteus wormery said...

I'm a little upset that my true calling - my ability to arrange wireless connection to the Ubuntu command line - has been outed. All the time I was able to hide behind the facade of a cat sick averse gardener, life was soooo much easier.

BTW Dow Agrochemicals are actually Union Carbide. Remember that name?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhopal_disaster
I bet PS has shares..... Am now off to compost the steering wheel of a Ford Cortina.

VP said...

Emmat - it's nothing to do with Bob Flowerdew is it? He advocates weeing into your compost bin, so I wouldn't be surprised if he used his poo in there as well

Arabella Sock said...

It is a 'known' fact that men prefer to pee outdoors where possible. This weeing on compost fallacy is an urban myth (possibly started by Flowerdew) created in order to facilitate this outdoor activity.

Anonymous said...

Can I ask a compost question?
What's wrong with cat sick?
Surely all those little parcels wrapped up in kitchen towel can't have harmed my compost?
It's bound to be full of interesting bacteria to break all the gubbins down, isn't it?
Or would puppy sick be better?

emmat said...

In theory, I think most books would advise that home compost heaps do not heat up enough for it to be safe to include animal waste in the mix.

Technically, this does include cat sick.

This is obviously much more important if you use your compost on veggies than if you just do flowers. Frankly, the flowers are fine with cat sick. I'd be concerned about using cat anything in compost that went on veggies. Particularly because once my grandma's cat vomited up a six foot tapeworm into her convertible car, which was parked in the drive with the top down.

Anyway if you want me to talk more about cat sick I really can.

mazzer welcome-wipe said...

I'm tempted to start blogging solely about cat sick. Seems to me there's an insatiable appetite for it.

Matt Wilson said...

Thanks for the link!

Anyhow, I saw a rat run out of my compost heap yesterday. I'm really upset. I think I'm going to need to set out live traps.