too much egg shells in compost bin ?

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spudlover

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too much egg shells in compost bin ?
« on: March 14, 2013, 23:15 »
i get about 100-200 egg shells a week from my wife who get them from work plus with all the veg peelings. all of them get put in my compost bins.when the compost is ready the shells are not broken down well.the compost is just full of egg shells.but i still use the compost.been doing this for years now.but am i putting too much egg shells in my bins ? paul

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arugula

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Re: too much egg shells in compost bin ?
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2013, 06:19 »
We usually keep the eggshells separate and spinkle them, crushed, around plants to help deter slugs. It doesn't prevent them, but it does help to deter.

:)
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allotmentann

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Re: too much egg shells in compost bin ?
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2013, 06:47 »
I can't see that it would hurt if they are mixed with lots of other things. If you want them to break down more quickly you just need to crush them. I always crush mine and never see any remains of them in my finished compost. :)

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compostqueen

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Re: too much egg shells in compost bin ?
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2013, 07:46 »
I used to run a B & B so had lots of eggshells in my compost too. I stir my compost while it's in the making so they did get broken down somewhat.  If you want them to be broken up more just crush them in your hands before putting them in the kitchen caddy, or make sure you stir the compost from time to time to break them up. 

The grittiness they bring to the compost will help deter slimeys  :)

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Kleftiwallah

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Re: too much egg shells in compost bin ?
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2013, 09:40 »

You could try roasting them in the oven as it cools down from some other use!
 I believe. . .they will then turn to powder. :unsure:

BUT  I have not tried this.

Cheers,   Tony.
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JayG

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Re: too much egg shells in compost bin ?
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2013, 10:02 »
Egg shells consist almost entirely of calcium carbonate crystals reinforced with protein, so they don't compost in the usual sense of the word, although they could in theory partially dissolve during the acid phase of the decomposition of surrounding materials.

That's not really a problem as such, but it's worth bearing in mind that they are basically a form of lime, and in great quantities you would finish up with a pretty limey compost, which wouldn't be suitable for all situations (especially for ericaceous plants, of course.)
« Last Edit: March 15, 2013, 16:26 by JayG »
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Trillium

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Re: too much egg shells in compost bin ?
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2013, 14:09 »
I just crush mine up fairly small and dump them into the compost bin, otherwise the critters would be after them. I've added them to compost for years and almost never see any traces once they're mixed with the soil.

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RichardA

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Re: too much egg shells in compost bin ?
« Reply #7 on: March 15, 2013, 15:54 »
we have our own ducks so many large shells go on heap - they don't break down as such but when dug in with other compost they eventually just break into little bits in digging over or break up in raking etc. No harm to use of shells and I think of benefit to texture of soil. I would keep doing it
R

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spudlover

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Re: too much egg shells in compost bin ?
« Reply #8 on: March 15, 2013, 16:20 »
thanks guys for your replys on this

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snowdrops

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Re: too much egg shells in compost bin ?
« Reply #9 on: March 15, 2013, 16:24 »
I have baked them in the oven then crushed them for around plants to deter slugs,they didn't go to dust though.
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mrsbean

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Re: too much egg shells in compost bin ?
« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2013, 18:33 »
i have club root on my plot, been told a mixture of compost, lime,bfb,crushed egg shells in biggish hole before planting brassicas may help. just putting shells in open tin to dry then just standing on them to crush. lucky you with all those shells, as already said good to deter slugs.

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JayG

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Re: too much egg shells in compost bin ?
« Reply #11 on: March 15, 2013, 18:42 »
If you dry eggshells in the oven to destroy the protein and can then crush them finely enough (and have enough of them) they can be used instead of lime, because that's exactly what you'll have finished up with.  :)

The slug-deterrent property depends on them being of the right (rough!) consistency and also dry - not easy to achieve both in practice!



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