Compost question

SwansonSilver

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We were curious to find out if we can throw dandelions in our compost pile. Will this cause weed issues in our garden beds when we eventually use the finished compost? Thank you for any input.


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iofthetaiga

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The compost process should kill any weed seeds. I compost dandelions all the time without issue. Just be sure they're well covered with other greens, so they don't just lay on top of the pile and distribute seeds with the wind.

That said, I occasionally find an invasive (such as yellow hawhsbeard) cropping up on my place, having been imported with driveway gravel, etc. I often don't spot those until they've flowered and are about to seed out. In those cases, I prefer to carefully pull them without letting any seed escape, and process them through my woodstove.
 

mudbuddy

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If your compost pile gets cooking near 130 to 140 degrees, it kills the seeds .

I compost them,
I mow & bag in the fall to make compost , leaves, grass & I'm sure millions of weed seeds.
Very few weeds seeds survive the compost process.

But when the wind blows, your neighbors dandelion seeds will find your garden (and yard) :)

Pulling a few weeds from the garden is therapeutic .

Get some old , wet moldy leaves from the woods to mix into the compost bin,
Natures compost & full of free composting bacteria & spores for our area.
I call it "seeding the compost bin." ;)

If you have trouble getting it hot, (not enough greens )
Get some high nitrogen fertilizer & mix it in,
some 22-4-4, or that should work well
or some 32-0-4, (higher the nitrogen the better to get it cooking),
Straight urea works great too, but harder to find.
 

mudbuddy

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One trick with horse manure composting it to get the urine soaked bedding too. It has
nitrogen to get the pile really cooking, I've had 160° in HM compost piles.
Weed free compost for sure at those temps.
 
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