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Hardcover The Rodale Guide to Composting Book

ISBN: 0878572120

ISBN13: 9780878572120

The Rodale Guide to Composting

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Format: Hardcover

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Book Overview

An essential guide to composting for all gardeners and environmentally conscious people This revised edition of The Rodale Book of Composting includes all the latest in new techniques, technology, and... This description may be from another edition of this product.

Customer Reviews

4 ratings

Worth its weight in manure :-)

Although the bulk of the material contained in this book could be found online, it's still a worthwhile purchase. Indeed, it is a must have. The purchase price of the book will be quickly regained in the money you will save making your own compost rather than purchasing bagged compost or synthetic fertiliser.A few of the chapters are more interesting than useful to the home gardener. For instance, one of the early chapters discusses the history of composting beginning with the ancient Akkadians. The final chapter discusses managing large scale compost operations (by large scale, I mean tens and hundreds of tons of waste) on the farm or as part of a municipal waste management strategy.The core of the book, however, is very directly useful. A chapter is provided describing the chemistry of what goes on in composting, and what goes on as plants attempt to take nutrients from the soil. Another chapter describes the various types of life from microbes to insects and worms (including lovely line drawings) that inhabit a compost pile during the various phases of its lifecycle.By far the most useful chapter is chapter 6, which provides a list of potential ingredients for your pile and suggestions on how to obtain them. Numerous charts are provided that indicate on balance whether an item should be considered a "green" or a "brown", and (should you desire more specifics) the actual NPK content of various ingredients. This is fully a fifth of the book.The next most useful chapter is chapter 10, which gives suggestions for various sorts of compost bins you can buy or build. Another chapter describes tools like chippers and shredders that might be useful to you if you plan to make a fair amount of compost. Alternatives are suggested for the folks who don't need quite that much labour saving help.I can't think of anything that is not in this book that I wish it had. Nor for that matter, can I think of anything that needs to be cut from it. It strikes the perfect balance between comprehensiveness and brevity.

Don't throw those coffee grounds away....

I began using the Rodale methods for organic gardening including composting back in the early 1970s and continue to do so today. I swear to you these methods work. If you truly want to be a great gardener and help save the planet from the depredations of the backward and evil, read this book. Rodale's dream of a compost pile in every back yard is alive. We can all make a difference and THE RODALE BOOK OF COMPOSTING shows you how. In the early pages of the book, the editors Deborah Martin and Grace Gersuny (the book is a composite of excellent articles published over the years in ORGANIC GARDENING) have included a history of composting. Composting was known to the Jews, the Romans, the Greeks, American Indians, and other traditional people. Washington and Jefferson used organic methods to grow their crops, vegetables, fruits, and flowers. Composting was a major activity for farmers until the petro-chemical industry persuaded farmers they needed oil-converted-to-fertilizer-and-poisons to grow crops. Practices are changing, but as the new AG bill shows, not fast enough. Why should the little guy compost? This book gives you all sorts of reasons for composting, but my response is why not compost. You can compost if you live in an apartment on the 29th floor of a building in New York City, and you might want compost for your house plants after you read this book. I have composted for so long I cannot imagine how anyone gardens and does not compost. First of all you add nuitients not available from man-made sources and these nuitrients help you grow great plants. Think of compost as breast milk. Why would you give your roses canned formula when they can have the real thing? When you use compost on your plants, you strengthen them against disease and predators. Given drought conditions and water shortages which stress plants, it's nice to know that compost enhances moisture retention. The book identifies the kinds of wastes that work best in the compost pile. For early farmers, manure was the answer. Most of us can still lay our hands on cow manure that has been composted, but it's expensive. There aren't as many farm animals as there once were and there are so many more of us. However, you do have some options even if you don't own your own cow. You produce things that can be converted into plant food.The book suggests that you may not want use dog "feces" because it smells bad, but I do. My POMS poop and I pick it up and throw it in my black plastic compost container. (I have two kinds of composters and several loose piles--all described in the book). Guess what--dogs can eat a relatively vegetarian diet and they won't have stinky feces and they will be healthier (just like humans!!).The book recommends against cat litter and feces, and I have used cat box litter after it was used by the cat and created HUGE plants (lots of nitrogen) so we stopped using cat stuff. I have used coco shells and they are great but cannot use them with dogs who are poisone

The Composting Bible

While there is a lot of detail in this book about how to maximize your composting quality, the basics are all here. Anyone with vegetable garbage from the kitchen, grass clippings and maybe even a neighbor with horses or chickens (not required) can make "black gold" and you don't need a degree in agronomy.Some of the composter designs in the book are simple; some are complicated, but all work just fine. We have the simplest kind--just a bin. Because of the recycling laws, everyone in our town including us walks to their compost heap after dinner and drops off the vegetable clippings. We don't have a sink garbage disposal and we don't miss it. Anyone can do this. Everyone with a garden plot or a yard, even if it is a postage stamp size, should do this.

Excellent book about composting!

This was the first book I ever read about composting, a subject I was minimally interested in. After one reading I was hooked on composting! I bought the book about six months ago and have since read it over and over, always seeming to learn something new every time I read it. In the meantime I have read everything I can find about composting. This book seems to cover everything. The other things I read are generally just a different way of saying the very things that are in this book. I believe the Rodale Book of Composting should be called the bible of composting for the everyday person.
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