June 16, 2009

At home composting

After living in Oregon, a very eco friendly state, I am having a hard time adjusting to Tulum, Mexico. For one the town itself JUST became a city so the basic services that one would expect to find are just now coming in. One of the services that I cannot wait for is recycling in Tulum. I have heard that there is or was a recycling center but no one to run it. And you have to bring your items there. So with no pick up, no people at the center and very few people with cars you can imagine how much trash (and much of it recyclable) gets thrown on the floor. And this drives me especially crazy because Tulum is supposed to be this whole super eco place. It is part of its whole shtick.

Anyway. Since I am not currently recycling I needed to do something to offset my guilt. So I started composting, much to the dismay of my husband. Now, we live in very close proximity to a lot of people and have very limited space. The last thing I wanted was a stinky mess. I saw some various designs for garbage bin composers on many websites. The one I liked the most was this one.

I did not want to purchase and materials so I used what I had. In my case it is our old kitchen garbage can that has no lid be cause it broke and so I used the bottom half of my cats carrying case with a brick on top. When I make my next one, I will use a can that is round on the bottom so that it is easier to roll.

I took my husbands drill and drilled a bunch of little holes in it. If I had to do it over again, I would have cut out larger fist sized whole but lined the inside of the bin with fine screen and mesh wiring. I think that would let the air through better. But it is so hot here that it is doing just fine.

I have a little bowl on the counter and I throw it in every night or so. I also throw in all of the leaves that my husband gets when he rakes. We have to be careful though because there are a lot of weeds and i do not want those in the bin. I do throw in our tp rolls, cereal boxes, and egg cartons. That helps a lot for the dry part of the compost.

Even after a few months, I still have not filled up the bin and it is a small little container that comes up to my about my knees. I am trying to turn or mix it but it is really hard. I think that if I did a larger and round one it would be easier.

I went over to my friends house the other day and he had just started composting recently as well. He has already put the first layer on his garden. I hope that mine is ready soon. I might ask him to come and take a look at mine and see if I am doing it okay.

My garden has definatly not been going well. There seem to be more weeds then anything growing. Something about living on the beach has been hard. Oh well. It is a learning curve. I am not much of a gardener at all and learning to do it in the sub tropical climate of the Caribbean is proving to be challenging. I really took the environment in Oregon for granted. Things grow like mad there.


Nancy said...

I am a long time composter and I think you're right about the round container...I have been trying to locate some redworms for composting, worm bin composting is my favorite kind of composting. Ripped up newspaper can go in your bin, too, to add fluff.

I ran across another cooking site I just love, you might want to take a look...http://rockinthestove.com/

Take care, Nancy

Leslie Limon said...

This sounds easy enough, that I just might be able to do it! I'm really looking forward to proving that I have a green thumb. Thanks for the tips.

Amanda said...

One of my best friends did conservation work in Oragan and after getting her masters plans to go back. She loves the eco friendly environment. I remember what her face looked like when she came back to MO and saw people throwing away glass beer bottles. lol Maybe by the time I have enough of a place to have a garden I can take all your experience. ;)


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