We had this particular probably pop up this year with our new tumbler compost bin. I wasn’t used to it, since we hadn’t had that happen before (at least that I noticed) with our inexpensive homemade compost bin (which we are still using as well). When it first happened, I ignored it. But, the next time I went out to add in some things and spin it, I almost thought I was going to get sick. Not good.
So, just in case you run into that problem too, I thought I would share how to help that issue.
Help! My Compost Bin Stinks!
If your compost has a poop smell, it probably means that you have too much green material (which isn’t all green, of course, but includes things like your banana peels and apple cores, as well as things like grass clippings). These things add a lot of nitrogen to your compost bin. Another issue may be that your compost is too wet. (It should be damp, but not wet.) When I had this problem, both of these things worked together to cause the issue.
The best way to combat this issue is to add more brown material, which is high in carbon. In a house of five family members, one of our favorite brown materials is the cardboard paper tubes from toilet paper. These used to go to our recycling, but now they pretty much exclusively are composted. We also add in things like newspaper (best to use ones that aren’t glossy or super colorful), paper towel, and shredded paper. Another fabulous brown material addition at this time of year are Autumn leaves. (The live leaves are green material, but dead leaves are brown material.) It is best to try to shred some brown materials before adding them into your compost.
Even if you aren’t having a smell issue, it’s still best to try to keep a nice mix of both green and brown materials in your composting bin. Just remember – your compost should not smell bad. If it does, it’s definitely time to consider if you’ve been adding too much of one type of material.
Do you have a compost bin/pile? What things do you find you are most often adding?
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