Cooking


Some sources liken composting to cooking, and I agree that an analogy exists.  However, I disagree that a pile “cooks” after it is built.  Nor do I subscribe to any kind of “recipe” that requires varying amounts of materials.  That said, as when cooking per a recipe, there are certain instructions that are to be followed, and nothing is really left to chance (e.g. moisture content is controlled…no random additions from rainfall, and materials are controlled…once a batch is made no new materials are introduced.  The goal is for as uniform a product as possible at the end.  As little as possible is left to chance.  What this means:  When following the PilePro Method, there should never be any need for “troubleshooting”.  Nothing will go wrong.  A with say, a well-established recipe for spaghetti, sauce, and meatballs…if the meal does not turn out properly, go back to the recipe and figure out what step you got wrong.  There is no need to troubleshoot the well-established procedure.

Also, I perceive of the composting process as two reactions:  an initial rapid reaction fueled by a high moisture and oxygen content (R1) followed by a slower reaction fueled by less of both (R2).  Some experts advise, after R1, decimation then recreation (decreation, inaccurately described as “turning”) but…unless you really want to do it for the purpose of exercise…it really doesn’t make sense.  If you want CM quickly, buy it.  Contrary to other teachings, CM is not free, unless your time has no value.  In the United States with its capitalist system, CM is much cheaper to purchase than it is to make.  Enough about that….

Another cooking analogy, this one a PilePro original, relates to large and small batch bins.  Large batch and storage bins (LBSB) are square or rectangular and SBBs are cylindrical.  Think about how we handle most food…it is stored in rectangular containers prior to cooking, and then cooked in cylindrical containers.  When materials arrive in large quantities and must be de-bagged, a rectangular container, being the most space-efficient, is the obvious choice.  When the time comes to accelerate the process by ideal watering, then a cylindrical shape makes the most sense.

Here yet is another analogy to cooking:  The PilePro Method recommends composting on a hard surface, such as a concrete slab, versus on soil, as just about every source advises.  Soil it is said, allows for ready passage of micro-organisms (MO’s) and earthworms into the compost pile.  Of course many sources advise that the composting materials already contain the necessary MO’s, and though I have no proof, agree.  What about the earthworms?  The PPM pretty much guarantees that the compost pile will be earthworm-free.  Is that a desirable condition?  I cannot recall where I read this, but one source advises that earthworms, lacking teeth, really are not all that effective as decomposers.  I will agree with this position.