Can you compost leaves without shredding them?

Discussion in 'Soils, Fertilizers and Composting' started by worldharmony, Jun 2, 2009.

  1. worldharmony

    worldharmony Active Member

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    I've gotten advice that you should shred leaves before putting them in your compost, however, I don't have a shredder and can't afford to buy one. Is shredding necessary? Can we just put the dried leaves into a bag and stomp all over them? :-)
     
  2. Michael F

    Michael F Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Yes, that would work fine, as long as you make them damp again before composting. Dry stuff won't compost.
     
  3. worldharmony

    worldharmony Active Member

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    That's good news! Thank you for the advice.
     
  4. Helen Leung

    Helen Leung Active Member 10 Years

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    Do you have a lawn trimmer? You can put the leaves in a large garbage bin and use the lawn trimmer to break down the leaves in there.
     
  5. JanR

    JanR Active Member

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    They will just take longer to decompose. You can run back and forth over them with a lawn mower. It will help make them smaller. The smaller the better.
     
  6. worldharmony

    worldharmony Active Member

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    I wondered if the lawn mower might be all right. We have a mulching mower, but if leaves wouldn't hurt it, we could try. The trimmer idea is good as well.
     
  7. JanR

    JanR Active Member

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    The leaves won't hurt the lawnmower.
     
  8. adly

    adly Member

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    shreadding the leaves provide more surface area for the composting microbe to degrade the stuff. The composting process complete faster. adding effective microbe assist the process
     
  9. worldharmony

    worldharmony Active Member

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    So I could put whole leaves into the pile and I'd still get compost but it would take much longer? Do you have any idea how much longer it would take?
     
  10. adly

    adly Member

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    It tooks 4 month to degrade all my empty fruit bunch from oil palm. but i used effective microbe and worm to do the job.

    as for the leaves, it might take lesser period. To fastern the process, I put the whole unshreadded leaves into big plastic bag, wet them with effective microbe and tight sealed. within 2 weeks all turn black.
     
  11. Michael F

    Michael F Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    That's in the tropics, though; it'll take a lot longer in temperate climates!
     
  12. worldharmony

    worldharmony Active Member

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    I'm in NE Ohio. I don't need to actually use the compost until next year, so I don't mind a slower process. Do you think in my region it could take a year if I don't shred the leaves?
     
  13. Michael F

    Michael F Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Probably the best part of a year, yes. If you stomp the leaves and get them started now, they should be ready by the end of the summer though.
     
  14. canadiyank

    canadiyank Active Member

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    I throw them in my compost, no shredding. But I'm a pretty lazy composter.
     

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