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Old 06-02-2009, 01:59 PM   #141
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Greetings and Welcome!!! to you, Audrey. Glad to hear from someone who's tried it successfully. I had to throw mine out - the serum grew multicolored mold on it.
Tks, thrilled to find a place to share my experience. The instructions at http://bokashicomposting.com are great. It just takes time. One step is the serum (I used yoghurt), the next is wetting the newspapers in the serum + brown sugar (is what I used), then draining them and then putting them into a nylon bag (I simply used a large bag and flattened out the pile of newspaper and the nylon so the air gets pushed out), waiting 15 days then it's sort of a chore to separate each page and lay it out to dry. Leaving the wet newspaper in a bag for more than 15 days I've had moths of some sort make a hole in the nylon, but nothing unusual. Also some white mold. But I've still used them anyway. The only problem I've had is finding a white creamy really stinking piece of something or other in a bokashi bucket after it's all done and mature (over one month) and which I'm guessing if either raw or cooked fat (from red meat). Otherwise as the author of bokashicomposting says, no failures yet. I do use double ply newspaper when it goes in. And I use paper or cardboard to soak up any juice if I put in tomatoes or something juicy. HTH
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Old 06-02-2009, 02:13 PM   #142
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Thanks again for the added info, Queuetue. I was very gratified to hear that my home made stuff might be as adequate as the more expensive EM Bokashi. And as for a suitable growing medium, I've tried coffee grounds (free from Costa if I collect the bin bag from outside the shop as it closes...). It seems to work OK.
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Old 06-02-2009, 02:15 PM   #143
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Just one question, Audrey, when you found the stinky bit of fat, was that after the fermented waste was buried and then composted down, or was that after the in-bucket fermentation period?
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Old 06-02-2009, 02:16 PM   #144
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The only problem I've had is finding a white creamy really stinking piece of something or other in a bokashi bucket after it's all done and mature (over one month) and which I'm guessing if either raw or cooked fat (from red meat).HTH
I should clarify that this stinky creamy white stuff appeared after I put the mature bokashi into a worm bin (probably didn't bury it well enough) and it brought some grubs (I'm guessing). My bokashi buckets have been fine, this stuff appears much later and way beyond the bucket stage, once out in the open.
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Old 06-02-2009, 02:25 PM   #145
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when you found the stinky bit of fat, was that after the fermented waste was buried and then composted down, or was that after the in-bucket fermentation period?
I'm using the mature bokashi (way over one month) in an abandoned worm bin (actually castings and other stuff added to a big barrel in a plant nursery, but not in fact a 'worm bin') to see if once I've separated the visible worms by hand, if I add bokashi (which I've done wrapped in 'half shade' - that'd be some sort of black netting) just what happens. After a week or two of this bokashi in a 'net', where there were no visible worms, huge worms pop up. And yes, this is not under any sort of control. I drop by once a week. I use this net so as to see whether the worms go into the bokashi or not.
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Old 06-02-2009, 02:45 PM   #146
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"A newbie here, into my 5th bucket of 'newspaper' bokashi'. The newspaper doesn't change it's appearance. You'll notice the difference after you take it out of the nylon bag, lay it out to dry, piece by piece (a delicate chore) and let it dry. Then you'll find it's sort of 'brittle' and then (once dry) you use it in your bucket."
I'm a newbie too. I used a newsprint catalog of some sort. I stuffed it in the ziplock then poured the juice over it. I let it sit for a few weeks until white blotches began appearing on it then pulled it out of the bag and stuck it upright in a corner to dry. It dried in place and all I'll have to do is rip off a page as needed.
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Old 06-03-2009, 01:02 AM   #147
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Oh Queuetue, thank you so much for providing so many details.

My wood chips were hardwood chips and hardwood bark.
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Old 06-04-2009, 06:02 PM   #148
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Sorry guys, I'm sticking with the commercial Mother Culture. I don't see how you can get the same balance of microorganisms with "homemade". I did look up the phototropic bacteria - and this is the definition of same : green and purple bacteria; energy for growth is derived from sunlight; carbon is derived from carbon dioxide or organic carbon
If I'm reading this correctly, and it's been a long,long time since I took bacteriology and biochem- you need those to help the lactobacilli unlock enzymes that help photosynthesis take place. That's evidently the part that allows the plant to ingest the maximum nutrient materials available for growth. Very interesting discussion. The more I learn about this subject the more I find out I don't know. Extremely interesting.
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Old 06-04-2009, 06:59 PM   #149
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I don't see how you can get the same balance of microorganisms with "homemade". I did look up the phototropic bacteria - and this is the definition of same : green and purple bacteria; energy for growth is derived from sunlight; carbon is derived from carbon dioxide or organic carbon
If I'm reading this correctly, and it's been a long,long time since I took bacteriology and biochem- you need those to help the lactobacilli unlock enzymes that help photosynthesis take place. That's evidently the part that allows the plant to ingest the maximum nutrient materials available for growth. Very interesting discussion.
I'd love to see a discussion on this, cause I haven't ever taken bacteriology or biochem. What I've found is (5 buckets worth, one after another, of *extreme bokashi* is my only experience in this) that the worms go for it in a set up I have at a plant nursery I visit regularly. I have compared their reaction to it with ripe apples and other stuff and they prefer the bokashi. I put it into 'half-shade' (netting) to check a week or so later to see if they've entered or not. And I've also put bokashi in old castings that I've visually cleaned of worms, also in a netting, and found that where there were no worms (we're talking castings that had been abandoned for a year or so, and that I had carefully handpicked), big fat worms popped up after a week or two. What I'm also trying is layering this *extreme bokashi* with old castings in buckets to see if the combination turns the bokashi into regular black soil as is claimed by bokashi people on the net. Presumably the microorganisms in the black soil transform the bokashi into black earth. I also tried layering roots (rhizomes) of a naughty naughty invasive we have, 'yellow ginger' or 'white garland lily' (hedychium flavescens) with mature *extreme bokashi*, but... useless, the ginger roots just sprouted anyway. It's actually related somehow to the lactobacilli family I believe.
I'd be thrilled to hear about this from others.
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Old 06-05-2009, 03:55 AM   #150
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Has anyone done a comparison of home-made bokashi versus EM Bokashi? I'm thinking of setting up two buckets side by side and seeing how effectively they deal with my kitchen waste. I suppose I could test the potency of each of the Bokashi juices coming off them by feeding two groups of plants and seeing if there were any differences. Once I'd fermented the two buckets I'd need to mix them up with similar soil - maybe bury them near each other and see how they broke down the kitchen waste. Then I suppose I would need to try growing something on each patch and seeing whether there are any diferences between the plants themselves. Or something like that....Anyone tried this? Or got any better ideas of how to compare the EM Bokashi with the home made stuff? (A microscope comes to mind, but I've only got my husband's old school-boy one and I wouldn't know whether that would be able to see the little fellas).

Has anyone tried anything like this?
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