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Composted Manure (Horse)

UserPost

2:30 am
August 1, 2015


Paul

British Columbia

Member

posts 31

Our neighbour lady down the road graciously donated a huge pile of last year's manure and bedding to my worms.  However, it turns out that this pile has never been turned.  It has composted and compacted to the point where I have to break it up just to shovel into the wheelbarrow.  While the outside layer of three or four inches is loose and dry, the inner pile is like clay.  The odd thing is (well, maybe not so odd, I don't know much about compost), even though the pile is black and moist, there is still uncomposted hay in the centre, and the temperature in the centre is ambient air temperature.  My thoughts are that the pile went anaerobic and shut down.  After I brought it home, I let it sit for about a week, thinking that because I had broke it up and re-piled it, it would start cooking again.  Wrong.  So I rigged up a frame and a piece of expanded metal and screened it all down to small lumps and chunks and re-piled it.  I let this pile sit for another three days, and still no temperature rise in the centre.  Obviously, this is done cooking.  But that's ok, at the very least, I have a pretty well life time supply of bedding.  One note of interest, there was a "root" system thriving in the original pile that looked to me like the makings of shaggy mane mushrooms, but I don't eat fungus, so they got chopped up for the worms.

7:37 pm
August 11, 2015


Philip Rock

Member

posts 84

I don't know enough about different manures either.  That's a topic about which you'll need to educate yourself – something worth doing if you have a friendly neighbor with a steady supply.  I do know there are big differences in manures from different animals.  Since this pile that you inherited was already aged, it's likely not a problem…but I do remember reading that horses are often given anti-worm medicine…which could potentially be a problem with fresh manure.

7:48 pm
August 11, 2015


Paul

British Columbia

Member

posts 31

Welcome home, Philip.  One of the first questions I asked was whether or not she had administered any meds to the horses, and was assured that they had not been medicated.  I have filled burlap coffee sacks with the screened manure (10 in total) and have put them up for winter use.  I also bought some real cheezy temperature probes off of ebay for $1.56 each to monitor temps and they are still at ambient, so I think they are done.

1:50 am
August 12, 2015


Philip Rock

Member

posts 84

Thanks Paul!  Sounds like you have a good stash of excellent bedding material – I'm envious!  Check your inbox – I saw your message and sent a reply.

Ciao for now,

Phil


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