The Gift that Keeps on Giving
If you love someone who loves horses, we have the perfect gift idea this holiday season ...
SAVE 20% on an O2Compost System!
Orders must be placed by Thursday, December 12th to receive your "box of goodies" in time for Christmas.
Our systems will convert horse manure into compost in 30 days with no need to turn the compost pile. No S#@t!
When ordering online, use the coupon code PERFECTGIFT at checkout. You may also place your order in person at 360-568-8085.
To learn more, visit our website and schedule a FREE 30-minute phone consultation with Peter Moon, the Prince of Poop.
Book it, Danno!
We have added a new appointment booking feature to the Contact Us page on our website. Now visitors can quickly and easily take the next step, eliminating a back-and-forth email exchange with the same goal in mind. If you are ready to take the next step to find out if an O2Compost system is the answer you've been looking for, use our booking app to pick the day and time that works best for a FREE 30-minute personal consultation with Peter Moon. During your conversation with Peter, he will learn more about your farm/facility, ask about your goals, answer any questions you might have about composting and, if requested, he will provide you with a proposal and cost estimate.
The original Contact Us Form is also still available for you to complete and submit. Peter will respond to new contact emails at his earliest opportunity.
For those who live in the northern latitudes, cold winter weather can pose many challenges with your O2Compost system.
- It is obvious that when we push cold air into the compost pile, the pile temperatures can drop significantly and the pile can literally freeze. For this reason, we recommend reducing your airflow to an absolute minimum when air temperatures are below freezing (e.g., 30-seconds On and 60-minutes Off with the valve half-open).
- It is less obvious that cold air is also very dry and has an enormous moisture holding capacity. When it is pushed into the compost pile it will take up a considerable amount of the moisture in the pile. If we over-aerate, we will most certainly dry the pile out and cause the composting process to stop altogether.
- If the manure that is mucked out of the stalls and sacrifice areas is already frozen, it would be a good idea to equip the receiving bin with low voltage heat cables. The objective is to thaw out the manure so that the bacteria stay active and can generate their own heat. Heat cables are commonly used in the greenhouse industry; they inexpensive and easy to find on the internet.
- Under cold conditions we recommend adding a thick cover layer of finished compost (12-inches +) on top of the raw manure. This cover can freeze solid but still help insulate the raw manure beneath to keep the composting process going even under extreme cold conditions.
- When composting in cold weather, it is also important to remove the compost from the bin during the early stages of the Curing Phase, while it still has latent internal heat and has not frozen into a solid compost-heap.
- Despite these challenges, an aerated O2Compost System has many advantages over a turned windrow compost operation. First and foremost, windrows typically do not get turned during the winter months and therefore the manure pile grows and grows until spring returns, the pile thaws out, and the manure becomes extremely wet and very difficult to handle.
If You Already Own an O2Compost System, I Recommend that You Do the Following:
- Clean out all of your bins that contain curing and finished compost to make room for your raw manure waste during the next several months.
- Take an hour or two to clean up your system, make any necessary repairs and test all of the working components: blower; timer; valves; aeration channels, gates, etc.
- If your pastures have not yet frozen, land-apply all of your finished compost to take advantage of the nutrients and organic matter when spring rolls around next year.
- Call us if you have any questions or concerns. You paid for unlimited technical support and we are here to help you in any way that we can to make your O2Compost System work at an optimum level. Remember, We Guarantee Your Success!
If You Are Considering an O2Compost System
- In northern latitudes, construction during the winter months can be extremely challenging if not outright impossible. But, winter is the perfect time to purchase your O2Compost System so that you have the design in-hand when next year’s construction season rolls around.
- A common complaint that we hear from new clients in the spring months is that they cannot find a contractor to build their system. With construction drawings in-hand, it is much easier to secure a contractor when the construction business is at its slowest and the contractors are “hungry”.
- We have extended our discount offer for our Benchmark, Cornerstone and Sterling Training Programs through the end of the year.
- Unfortunately, we anticipate a 10 – 15% price increase on our Training Programs to off-set the increase in equipment costs. This will take effect January 1st, 2020.
- Now it the perfect time to take advantage of current pricing and to plan for the 2020 construction season.
“Think BIG, Start Small” with an O2Compost Micro-Bin System
- For those who would like to proof-test aerated composting on a small scale, we recommend our Micro-Bin System. It is perfect for the 1 – 4 horse farm as a complete solution.
- The bins are small (2.5 – 4 cubic yards), portable and easy to construct in a heated shop or garage.
- The bins are well suited to all varieties of feedstocks, including livestock manure, food waste, green waste, biosolids, small livestock mortalities, etc.
- Micro-Bins are also perfect for “Pre-Composting” feedstocks in advance of a vermi-composting (worms) operation.
Take Action When It’s Snowing Outside
- Visit our website.
- Take a look at several hundred O2Compost systems on our Projects page.
- Learn about aerated composting by reviewing the many articles our Compost 101 page.
- Review our Product and Service Guide.
- Schedule a free 30-minute consultation with Peter Moon, O2Compost’s resident expert on all things compost.
Volunteers Compost Food Waste in San Diego County
Over the years, our compost systems have been used in a variety of educational and community applications. It’s a good feeling to know the idea of aerated composting is being embraced, taught, and shared with others. Here is a latest success story:
The Solana Center for Environmental Innovation is a nonprofit organization in San Diego County that focuses on organic waste reduction, becoming one of the first community-based recycling programs in the State of California in 1983. In 2017, the Center’s Director of Education, Diane Hazard, spearheaded the installation of the first of many O2Compost Micro-Bin Systems. Two of the completed bins are shown below.
| Hexagonal Micro-Bin
|| Octagonal Micro-Bin
The O2Compost Micro-Bins are used to compost food waste brought in by participants of the Food Cycle Program, including bokashi treated food waste (fermented organic matter – www.bokashiliving.com), coffee grounds, wood chips, finished compost, and paper towels. As an added bonus, the participants of the program are allowed to pick up the finished compost for use in their home gardens. According to the Center’s Environmental Educator, Tori Morin, the Food Cycle program is growing rapidly.
Since the installation of the first aerated compost bin, Solana Center’s composting programs have diverted nearly 6 million pounds of organic waste from the landfill. Last year alone, Solana Center accomplished the following:
- Reached 30,000+ San Diego residents and 8,000 students through environmental education and community outreach programs;
- Taught more than 700 people at workshops and courses;
- Addressed more than 1,500 environmental inquiries;
- Managed a community of volunteers who logged 3,000+ volunteer hours;
- Trained 70 Master Composters;
- Continued to build upon their waste management infrastructure and capacity; and
- Saved more than 40,000 gallons of rainwater from becoming runoff.
Congratulations to Diane, Tori and the many Solana Center staff and volunteers who have made this organization such a success! Please visit their website for more information about the services they provide.
Frequently Asked Question
QUESTION: What is composting?
ANSWER: "Composting means the biological degradation and transformation of organic solid waste under controlled conditions designed to promote aerobic decomposition."
“Natural decay of organic solid waste under uncontrolled conditions is not composting.”
Reference: Washington State Solid Waste Handling Standards: WAC 173-350-100
Composting does not require advanced training in engineering or biology. In fact, composting is easy if you achieve a few simple parameters when preparing the compost mix. These include:
- Balanced Carbon and Nitrogen, both of which are readily available in livestock manure;
- A porous mix of materials, which is easy to achieve with manure mixed with stall bedding; and
- A moisture content of 60 – 65%; a tightly squeezed handful of mix will produce a drop or two of water
At this point all we need to do is induce airflow through the pile. We accomplish this with a small blower that is operated by an on/off cycle timer. For an O2Compost bin system, the timer is typically set to turn on for 30-seconds and off for 30-minutes to get the process started.
The Active Phase of Composting
With aeration, the initial, or Active Phase, of composting occurs in the first 21 to 30 days. During this period, the temperature of the compost mix will increase rapidly and our goal is to achieve temperatures throughout the pile of 55oC (= 131oF) for at least 3 days. When we do this, we effectively destroy pathogens, parasites, fly larvae, and weed seeds in the mix.
The Active Phase of composting is largely a bacterial driven process, and these bacteria represent a range of organisms that thrive at low, medium and high temperatures. The bacteria consume the readily available forms of carbon including: carbohydrates; proteins; simple sugars; and fats, oils and grease (FOG). When we add a small amount of air to the mix, the pile temperature will go up but if the pile temperatures exceed 70oC (=158oF) the composting process slows down. When this occurs, we increase the blower on-time to displace the excess heat out of the pile (observed as steam) and the pile temperature slowly drops back into the desired range.
The Curing Phase of Composting
After about 21 days of Active Composting, the bacteria in the compost pile are replaced by a wide range of fungi, as evidenced by mushrooms, mycelium (photo) and a white fibrous material called Actinomycetes (“Ac-tin-oh-my-seats”). It is the fungi that give compost it’s “forest-duff” fragrance.
During the Curing Phase, the fungi breakdown the more resilient forms of carbon including: cellulose and hemi-cellulose (hay); and lignin (wood fiber). It is during the Curing Phase that we also see most of the textural change in the finished compost product. It is also during this phase that unstable (ammonium) forms of nitrogen convert over to stable (nitrate) forms of nitrogen which are available to augment plant growth for long periods of time.
Curing can take place in the compost bin without airflow or in a pile off to the side of the compost system. This phase of the composting process generally takes 30-60 days when the compost is to be used in the garden or sold or given away to friends and neighbors.
If the compost is removed from the aerated bin and placed on the ground to cure, earth worms will find it and populate the pile over a period of several months. And earthworms make excellent finished compost. In fact, many of O2Compost’s clients are vermi-composters who are in the business of raising worms and producing worm castings, which have truly magical powers in the garden.
More Good News
With an O2Compost System you will:
- Eliminate the cost of disposal
- Convert a waste into a value added product that supports plant growth
- Reduce off-site impacts to surface and ground water resources
- Reduce odors and neighbor impacts
- Reduce fly pressure and improve your horses’ health
- Sequester carbon in the soil
- Sequester Nitrogen, Phosphorous and Potassium in the soil
- Improve storm water infiltration and reduce soil erosion
- Improve moisture retention and increase draught resistance
- Create a new profit center for the farm
To learn more, visit Compost 101 on our website.
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