Windrow Composting of Vegetable Waste Using Naturally Available Activated Material
Keywords:Activated material (AM), Composting, Cow dung, Poultry manure.
Composting is one of the most common methods of recycling organic matter back into the soil to improve the soil quality and fertility. In the present study, composting of vegetable waste is done with easily decomposable activated material (AM) such as cow dung and poultry manure along with dried straw and green leaves as bulking agents. In the first attempt, the windrow piles were set-up which consisted of different combinations of vegetable waste, along with AM and bulking agents. Secondly, a comparative study was carried out where the effects of AM on temperature, pH, moisture content, TOC, TN, C: N ratio, etc., during the composting process was studied. Among all the PILES, PILE-2 (with cow dung as AM) maintained a higher range of temperature, pH (7.83) and moisture content (76.323%) throughout the composting period. An increase in TN and reduction in TOC was also observed in PILE-2, which indicates faster rate of organic matter degradation, as a result, C/N ratio of finished compost in this case showed significant reduction. Hence PILE-2 showed the best results. Therefore, according to the present study, cow dung is one of the combinations of waste materials which may serve the purpose during composting process.
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