Monday, July 29, 2013

All about Kambha-composting in your backyard

I still remember how we got introduced to the Kambha. We had gone to a friends' house and there we saw a set of three pot-like units one on top of each other.We got curious and asked them about it.They told us that it was composting unit made out kitchen waste! We were  impressed.So much that we bought our own Kambha few months later. We took a bigger one considering the amount of kitchen waste we generate every day ( We are a family of five). It cost us around thirteen hundred bucks.So just wanted to  enlighten those who are new to it and want to try it out.

How does it look like?
This is the three tired  unit we bought.You can check more varieties in the daily dump site(search for "daily dump"  in Google). There are various sizes according to the kitchen waste you generate. There is even a small,cute one for kids!

Kambha 3 Tiered Large

How do you use it?

We first start by dumping all the kitchen waste the top-most (call it A). We keep doing it until it becomes three fourths full.Remember to stir the contents once in a while.Once the pot is 3/4ths full ,you need to transfer its content to the second pot (called B) .Your A pot again ready for use.Once it is 3/4ths full again we need to shift the contents of B to C(the bottom-most post) and after this we need to shift contents of A to B .Your A is empty again and is ready to use.After a month or so (initially it may take longer) you will find that the contents of bottom-pot have turned into manure.Trust me the smell coming from it will be like the smell of soil.

What all kitchen waste can we dump/not dump?

We dump vegetable peels,fruit peels(all fruits),coffee and tea decoction,dry leaves. We are not supposed to add coconut shell,seeds etc because they don't decompose.Do not add any plastic material to it.They say we can dump leftover food as well but we don't as ours is an apartment and we feel it may emanate bad odour.
(Maybe it is our imagination,but we have never tried it).

How does the manure look like?
Here is how the manure looks like.The one you see in the bucket.

What are the issues you may face with it?
- if yours is an apartment then unless you have a sit out or an balcony big enough it would be advisable to use a smaller one.

-Flies : During summer we faced a major problem with the flies.When I say flies I mean the fruit flies.They were virtually everywhere. Then we found a golden solution for it!. In Apple cider (vinegar, we found it in a supermarket) we poured some liquid dish-washing soap and added some water into it We used a wide transparent bowl for it(plastic).All the flies fell right into it and that was the end of it :).

- Bad odor :This you may get when you go closer to the Kambha. But otherwise there wont be any strong odor.

- You need to allot 1 hour of your weekend time once a month to move the contents from A to B to C.   But trust me its worth it.

What do you do with the manure?

You can use it for your own plants or give it to your friends and neighbors. The manure generated is very rich and the plants will grow very well organically.On the daily dump site you would find a leave-it pot as well for you to store your manure.

Where can I buy one?

We bought it from a nursery Check out more details on the daily dump site.

The site has detailed text on using the Kambha and other FAQs you may have.
After the use of Kambha our wet-waste has come down to one fourth! We are very happy about it :).

Guys go for it and do your bit for the environment.

Happy Composting.

1 comment:

Niveditha said...

Good Job, worth it. But I would not be able to do it for now. Will try once I see some light in the tunnel :)