Your Source for Gardening in the Sunshine State!
Critter Litter Compost
Your Kids' Critter Litter Makes Super Compost
If your children have pet mice, gerbils, hamsters, guinea pigs, rabbits or birds their dirty litter makes an excellent addition to your compost pile. Your plants will enjoy the nutritional boost of the animal's manure and you will be doing your part to cut down on the trash being hauled to the landfill. Of course if your children have larger pets such as horses, cows, ponies, goats, chickens, emus, ostriches, llamas and so on... you should already know of the value of those animals' poo too.
Additionally waste products from your home and kitchen such as fruit and vegetable peelings, egg shells, nut shells, hair, paper towels and coffee grounds should also be added to the good old earth-friendly compost pile.
Unfortunately dog and cat manure, meat, animal fats, bones or dairy products should not be added to your compost pile as they have the tendency to attract undesirable critters to your yard.
How do you compost? It is easy, here is how:
Choose a spot for your compost pile or bin (your community's solid waste authority may be able to to provide you with a low cost plastic compost bin or you should be able to pick one up at your local garden center). The spot you choose should be out of the way, but receive sun-light most of the day.
Add four parts of grass clippings, weeds or food scraps to your pile or bin then add 2 parts dried leaves, critter litter, wood shavings, dried pine needles, tree trimmings or straw. To enhance the composting process add a dose of septic tank accelerator to your pile or bin and mix well.
Once a month you should mix your pile with a shovel or pitchfork to help the materials you have put in it to break down.
If your compost smells bad it means that you may have to mix it more often.
Your compost pile should be warm to the touch. If it is not then you should add some water or more green materials such as food scraps, grass clippings or weeds and mix well.
©1999 Florida Gardener. All Rights Reserved.
Last updated 06/03/08