Bokashi bucket question

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Bokashi bucket question

Postby malbec » Sun Nov 16, 2008 12:13 pm

Just wondering how much "stuff" a bokashi bucket will chew through and in what sort of time frame?
Hubby is worried about fruit fly around our compost attack the tomatos and is suggesting throwing
the scraps in the bin (heresy!) so I am looking for an alternative composting method during the summer.
We make roughly 2 or 3 litres of scraps a day (it varies). Would a bokashi cope with the sort of load?
Bec :)

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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby bubba louie » Sun Nov 16, 2008 12:48 pm

The small flies that hang around compost aren't fruit flies.
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby guzzigirl » Sun Nov 16, 2008 1:27 pm

you can get a 120 litre (small wheelie bin) sized one for garden/commercial use.
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby Sam » Sun Nov 16, 2008 4:33 pm

They can take more than they look like they will take. We generate a reasonable amount (but I haven't measured) and it takes about a month to fill. I have two so while one stands, I fill the other one.
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby Cosmic » Sun Nov 16, 2008 9:52 pm

I have a load ( 50 or more) of bottomless buckets that I used last year for my new tomato plantation. This year I'm not using them so have 'planted' them in various locations around the garden. Kitchen scraps go into them are pushed down to capacity, then a bit of chook poo and chook poo water added. A lid on top ( saucers from unused plant pots) and a rock and I leave it to the worms. Takes about a month and the material is composted and ready to just take the bucket away and spread it on the surface. They take up next to no space and can be reused after a month. I still find trench composting the best way. I also have a tumbler and a heap but once the heap is composte I'm not going to bother again, it gets too painful turning it with my crook shoulder.
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby Pam » Mon Nov 17, 2008 5:32 am

Bec, it would handle it no worries at all. When scraps are added they are squashed down with a masher to remove any air amongst it, so it does hold an incredible amount.
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby malbec » Tue Nov 18, 2008 9:15 am

Thanks everyone. Sounds like it might be the way to go.
Bubba I have tried convincing hubby that the flies are vinegar flies but to no avail. :roll: They are rather unpleasant though as there
is a great cloud whenever you put scraps in the compost or worm farm. We usually have them in the house too over summer. We usually leave a glass
of wine with a paper funnel on the kitchen bench for them to drown in (what a waste!)
Cosmic the bucket idea wouldn't work at the moment as the garden is full (yay!) and we have small children who like to "fiddle" with things :wink:
Bec :)

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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby guzzigirl » Tue Nov 18, 2008 1:56 pm

try sprinkling some lime over your compost to control the vinegar flies.
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby HeyIts007 » Thu Jun 21, 2012 2:45 am

I think you might need a couple of Bokashi buckets. Ultimately It depends on what that 2 or 3 litres constitutes. i.e. if you stuck it in a blender, how many litres of waste would you end up with ? Perhaps half a litre ? Another option is a worm farm with a kilo of compost worms. They work for us. They can consume 500 grams of waste a day. i.e. half their body weight. Perhaps weigh your 3 litres of waste on your kitchen scales and then work it out from there.
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby lucylu » Sun Jun 24, 2012 3:43 pm

Hi there

We produce quite a lot of scraps too, and if we're not using anything else, fill the bucket in 2-3 weeks. So we have 2. It works VERY well - I love the bokashi, and I highly recommend it. One thing to note is that it will smell unless you drain the liquid out daily (I don't, and I just put up with the smell but taht wouldn't be OK for everyone).

The liquid is fab for the garden too.

If you have room, chooks are a great way to get rid of scraps. Just a thought. I've never had much luck with worms, but love our chooks, and so do the kids.

The flies could be fruit fly, especiallly if you have tomatoes in there. I have quite a lot around at the moment, and they are coming in the house and hanging around our leftover red wine too! But they are definitely fruit fly unfortunately.

Let us know how you go :)
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby betr2garden » Mon Jun 25, 2012 12:53 pm

A commercial Bokashi bucket holds around 18 to 20 Litres of compressed scraps. That is an amazing amount as pressing down each addition just leaves room for more.

I bought one commercial bucket before changing to doing Bokashi in bags. I find this better as I can pile bags up in a drum in the shed and use them when I am having a gardening day (or when I'm up to digging). I have had trouble getting compostible bags in Australia that are not 'breathable' - the brand Bio-Bag is breathable. I picked this idea up from Jenny's Bokashi Blog. Jenny lives in Sweden so needed a way to accumulate Bokashi over winter as the ground freezes. You can find out more at http://bokashiworld.wordpress.com/2012/ ... do-bokashi

I just line a lidded bucket with a bag and fill according to the normal Bokashi method (adding more absorbent material to keep it dry so it doesn't get smelly). When the bucket is full I merely tie a knot in the bag and can re-use the bucket. I was using 10L buckets, but have fallen in love with a 5.5L Decor bucket which I fill every few days and which gives me small bags to bury (split open or left in compostible bags to act as time-release fertiliser) or feed to my wormfarm.

The main thing I like about Bokashi is in the kitchen. Anything and everything just goes in (meat, seafood, dairy, paper, citrus, the lot) so it's easy for the family, visitors or even to take with us on holidays. We went away with 4 families including lots of kids and lots of non-gardeners/non-composters and everyone found it easy to use.
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby Pam » Tue Jun 26, 2012 5:25 am

I just line a lidded bucket with a bag and fill according to the normal Bokashi method (adding more absorbent material to keep it dry so it doesn't get smelly). When the bucket is full I merely tie a knot in the bag and can re-use the bucket.


It seems a shame not to get the liquid though.

So what bags did you end up using, Betr2garden?
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby lucylu » Tue Jun 26, 2012 10:18 am

Oh, meant to add that I've read you don't need to add so much of the bokashi powder.. I know someone who doesn't add it at all - just rinses his bucket out and the bacteria remaining repopulate the next load. I must admit I don't use as much as they recommend and it still works fine.
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby betr2garden » Tue Jun 26, 2012 10:51 pm

I haven't found a fully compostible bag that is available in small quantities in Australia yet. Target used to have usable compostible bags as checkout bags, but now they've gone to reusable bags (like the 'green bags'). I'm sure someone is buying the minimum 500 or 1000 bags that places like BioPak sell, but I haven't found them. I have samples from a Swedish manufacturer and from BioPak as well as a small pack from BioBag Australia. I use them all at different times as I am trialling different methods. It is easy to get degradable bags (even in the supermarket) so I double bag flimsy Biobags in degradable bags sometimes.

If you don't get rid of the liquid it is made available to plants when you use the fermented bags. I sometimes distribute microbe-laden absorbent material from within the bags in sheet mulched gardens, etc.

I would be cautious with trying to do Bokashi without Bokashi as that would be compost (a rot as apposed to a ferment). You can judge if you need more bran mix (or liquid Bokashi) by the smell and you wouldn't be keeping a bucket of stinking rot in your kitchen for a month or so. However, always interested to hear results of different things people have found successful.
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby Pam » Wed Jun 27, 2012 5:18 am

lucylu wrote:Oh, meant to add that I've read you don't need to add so much of the bokashi powder.. I know someone who doesn't add it at all - just rinses his bucket out and the bacteria remaining repopulate the next load. I must admit I don't use as much as they recommend and it still works fine.



betr2garden wrote:
I would be cautious with trying to do Bokashi without Bokashi as that would be compost (a rot as apposed to a ferment). You can judge if you need more bran mix (or liquid Bokashi) by the smell and you wouldn't be keeping a bucket of stinking rot in your kitchen for a month or so. However, always interested to hear results of different things people have found successful.


Lucylu, the reading I did when I first looked into bokashi was that you just need enough to cover the surface when you add new material - how thick you make this covering is variable I guess.

I retired ours a couple of years ago, because I couldn't convince hubby NOT to economise on the powder quite as much as he was, and it was always smelly. I must get it going again one of these days. I like your idea of using the smaller containers though betr2garden, so might have to do some experimentation there - it's not hard to fit a tap to a container (well worth it to me to mess around a bit to get the liquid, but that's just me)
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby lucylu » Wed Jun 27, 2012 2:00 pm

Yeah Pam, I love the liquid too.

The guy I know who doesn't use any pre-made bokashi (grains or liquid) is definitely making bokashi rather than rot. He is a composting/nutrient recycling obsessive! :lol: Perhaps his buckets fills more slowly though, since he has so many options for his kitchen waste, which would give the bacteria time to build up numbers.

Mine is also definitely fermenting/pickling rather than rotting and as I said, I use a lot less than recommended. Having 2 buckets helps though as I am able to leave one to get nice and pickled and juicy before I need to empty it.

Have you tried the liquid Pam? Might please hubby... I find it more economical and works just as well. You can also make your own, if you have the time & inclination.
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby Pam » Mon Jul 02, 2012 6:25 am

betr2garden wrote:I haven't found a fully compostible bag that is available in small quantities in Australia yet.


http://www.mazeproducts.com.au/Products ... of_20.aspx
Apparently the bags that KFC uses are compostable, so if you know anyone who eats much of it you could ask them to save their bags.
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby betr2garden » Tue Jul 03, 2012 5:10 pm

Thankyou so much for the links Pam. I will be doing some research and making some enquiries to see if these ones fit the bill. Then some more trials to do.

I knew that, if it was worth knowing, the members at Garden Express would know it! 8) :wink:
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby betr2garden » Tue Jul 03, 2012 5:17 pm

I forgot to say I was in Target the other day and they are still using their compostable bags (they cost 20 cents now, but anyone who just wants to have a try with bag Bokashi should be able to get their hands on them - e.g. pinch them off their shopping friends??). They have handles, but work ok for small containers.
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Re: Bokashi bucket question

Postby Sam » Wed Jul 04, 2012 10:21 am

I checked yesterday at a local cleaning supply shop - they stock degradable bags, which break down in about 18 months.

They said they don't get the BIO-degradable (and that most places don't) because they come by ship to Australia and the general concern is that they'll be like confetti when they arrive.

The bags are $6.95 - $7.95 for 250 depending on size - medium or large. They're like your normal plastic shopping bags.

Can pass on the link if anyone is interested - just send me a PM. The shop does on-line ordering.
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