Interesting. It seems that “bokashi” is one of the more popular searches that brings people to this blog, so I figured I should update on how my bokashi experience is going. Last time, I had just finished with my first bucket of bokashi. I do have more going. As far as that goes, I have learned that adding a piece of cardboard to the container to cover the compost makes a huge difference in the amount of white mold you’ll see. Between that and being sure to drain the compost tea regularly, smell hasn’t been nearly as much of an issue when I open it to add more scraps. I’ll post more about that when this batch is ready to be done cooking.
I was left with the problem of what to do with the pickled compost, since I live in an apartment with no outdoor space to plant. I do have the option at some point of bringing some of it to a friend’s to add to an outdoor compost pile, but I’d like to be able to use some of it myself. So I came up with an idea, that may or may not be useful. The verdict is still out, but I’ll show you what’s happening so far.
My idea was to get a plastic bin with a cover, some unfertilized potting soil, and bury my bokashi in the comfort of my own studio apartment. I can already see that this won’t work for all of the pickled compost I accumulate, because of space limitations. As far as I can tell, it will allow me to use some of it, and the rest can go to a friend’s.
This is what it looked like when I opened it up, about a month later:
I had a take-out container from Whole Foods that was compostable, so I ripped it up and added it to the top. There’s a bit of white mold on top as well.
This is what happened to the pickled compost that’s buried about halfway into the container:
It’s a completely different composition that what it was when I transfered it into the container. Interesting.
I ended up just taking some of the soil from the top (sans the take out container, which hadn’t been in there very long) and around the bokashi, mixing the rest up, and adding more unfertilized potting soil to the top.
I’ve found that I have absolutely no problem with odor coming from the bin, except when digging up the bokashi, which was again just the sweet/sour smell, not a rotting smell.
I put the now (hopefully) fertilized soil into a window planter, and let it sit for over a week (I got too busy to deal with it). Today, I added more water to the soil as it had dried out, and planted some basil, parsley and scallion seeds. I have no idea if scallions will work in a container, but I figured it couldn’t hurt to try.
I’ll post an update when and if the seeds start to sprout!