Re: Carbon/Nitrogen ratios
Dr. H. Michael Simmons (email@example.com)
Tue, 10 Nov 1998 17:04:44 -0500 (EST)
Cotton waste contains 1.32% nitrogen, .45% phosphoric acid, and .36%
potash. It is a carbon source for compost. Unless the cotton was
organically grown, it may contain significant residues of pesticides. I'm
not sure about tobacco dust, but tobacco leaves contain 4% nitrogen, .5%
phosphoric acid, and 6% potash and serve as a nitrogen source for compost.
Tobacco stems contain 2.5-3.7% nitrogen, .6-.9% phosphoric acid, and
4.5-7% potash and serve as a carbon source. Swine manure (fresh) contains
.6% nitrogen, .45% phosphoric acid, and .5% potash. It is a nitrogen
source. Wood chips, like sawdust, have a 400:1 carbon/nitrogen ratio and
break down very slowly. Swine manure contains 86% moisture and only 14%
organic matter. It would take a lot of swine manure to break down wood
chips and cotton waste. One of the problems with using high moisture
manures in quantity in the compost is that the oxygen circulation is
seriously restricted unless turning is thorough and frequent.
H. Michael Simmons
Community Garden Project
Bloomington Parks and Recreation
P.O. Box 848
Bloomington, IN 47402
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