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First base layer disappointment

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  • First base layer disappointment

    Hi all,
    I’ve been composting since early June and just took a look at my base layer and it’s a black slimy mess 😢 it’s still
    running at 40 degrees and doesn’t smell
    awful- just a bit cabbagey but having looked at pictures on the hot bin site it looks like it’s gone anaerobic. I’ve been draining off loads of leachate since the get-go and probably didn’t use enough paper at times.
    Can I dry this out and use it or should I dry it out and add it back in with some fresh grass clippings and extra paper and chippings?
    Help! I’m a bit gutted!

  • #2
    I made a response to a similar post.

    Remember that it is the upper layers of the compost that get hot. So, when you originally start your HotBin, what you put in first will be at the bottom, the coolest area. Also, during the three to four months you have been using your HotBin all of the moisture that is not evaporated will flow down through the cool bottom layer. Your experience, I think, is perfectly normal The material behind the hatch will not have been subjected to high temperatures and will have suffered the onslaught of moisture from the material above.


    • #3
      Hi Nortonbeak,
      thanks for your reply. Can I use it in my beds then or should I dry it out and put it back in there too with paper etc?


      • #4
        Personally, I would use it as a mulch on your beds. I hope you have not put perennial weeds in. They would not have been subjected to sufficient heat to kill them. The same may well go even for annual weeds.


        • #5
          Thanks for that, I unfortunately have put weeds in there as per the hotbins assurances they’d be killed! But will dig it into my veg trug as weeding that will be easy. Thanks so much for your help and hopefully the next batch will be the real deal!