Composting Juiced Pulp

Composting Juiced Pulp, Wet & Dry, Buried V in a Compot, turned out to be an interesting experiment as the experiment was altered by the excessive rain and flooding across many areas of Queensland and New South Wales including in my garden.  This experiment took my first experiment a little further by burying wet waste and dry waste separately and putting wet waste and dry waste into two Compots to compare the results between all 4 sites. You can watch that video from this link if you have not seen it before.

How is juiced pulp created?

Juicing Fruit and Veg

Kind of a dumb question as I am sure we all know that pulp is the left-over material extracted by juicing fruit or vegetables to make a healthy drink or maybe to use in cooking.   The juicing process literally removes most of the juice leaving behind semi-dry pulp waste.  I say semi-dry because it is not 100% dry, but it is close enough.  It looks light and fluffy, but it is actually quite compacted matter.   Compacted pulp devoid of moisture will not break down quickly in any composter as worms, Soldier Flies, bacteria, and other composting critters prefer wet waste to dry waste, because it is easier for them to break it down.  That is not to say that the pulp won’t break down at all.  It will, over time.  It just takes longer depending on the method of composting you prefer.

Some people use pulp in their cooking to bulk up stock or gravy. A great alternative if you cook a lot. I think you could safely freeze leftover pulp till you need it for cooking.  Otherwise, composting is of course the next best thing. 

What bugs will eat the wet juiced pulp?

Some Bugs that will eat food waste

Bacteria, worms, mites, cockroaches, slaters, millipedes, Soldier Flies, and other garden critters you can’t see will all feast on decomposing waste.  If it is wet, it will make their job easier. Thus, the best thing to do with pulp is soak it in some wastewater to reconstitute it before you try to compost it.   This is what makes the eco-eze Compot composter work so fast.  But it is up to you what method of composting you want and how fast you want to see results.

What if I just toss it on top of my Garden Bed?

Dried Orange Peel and Banana Skin

If any fruit or vegetable waste is tossed on top of your garden bed (as opposed to burying it) it will be exposed to air and sun dehydrating it rather than decomposing it. That is if it hasn’t been eaten by garden critters first.  Everything in your garden is looking for a quick meal.  

I am sure you have seen dried orange peels or banana peels before. They end up shrivelled, hard, and dry, completely devoid of any moisture and make your garden look a bit messy.  Hence, you are not getting the best value from your waste as you would if it decomposed as opposed to dehydrating.   This is not a big deal unless you are wanting a nice neat tidy looking garden and are not worried about attracting the wrong kind of garden critters.  Given the right conditions this dried waste will eventually decompose into the soil.   It is just super slow.

How do I change dehydrated waste to hydrated waste?

Wet and Dry Pulp

Simple. You can change the outcome of food dehydrating simply by soaking it in water to reconstitute it before adding it to your eco-eze Compot Composter or burying it in the ground.  If you soak the pulp for a few days in your wastewater it will eventually ferment.  This is great in a Compot as Soldier Flies love fermented waste plus the smell keeps vermin away.  But it’s not so good in a worm farm as worms don’t like fermented waste.   It is too acidic for them so they will move away till the waste is safe for them to eat.

Can I bury juiced pulp in the ground?

Burying Wet and Dry Pulp

Absolutely you can bury it if you are happy digging holes.  It will bring lots of worms into your garden, but it is still a slower process than putting the wet pulp inside a Compot.  And there is no guarantee that vermin will not try to dig it up. 

If you have soaked your pulp for too long in the water, it will ferment. In the garden the worms will move away from fermented waste till it has deacidified.  This is what happens when you bury Bokashi waste.  It can take up to 10 days for the waste to neutralise enough for the worms to break it down.   Nothing wrong with this method but it is slower.

Can I put the wet juiced pulp in my worm farm, tumbler, or bay composter?

Wet Pulp in Above Ground Composter

Yes, you can if you remove most of the water first (tip it onto your garden bed) and fill your composter with just the wet pulp that remains after you drain off the excess water.   It only becomes a problem if you put the wet pulp and the excess water together into most composting systems but not if you are using an eco-eze Compot Composter.  Too much water in worm farms, bay composters, or tumblers usually make the compost too wet which in turn can turn the compost into an anaerobic environment, which in turn makes it very smelly or one big sloppy mess especially if you are using a tumbler.  As a bonus you get all those little vinegar flies and other flies hanging around your composter.

That is why you need to tip off the excess water, so it does not cause a problem in your composter.  However, in an eco-eze Compot Composter the wet waste and water is not a problem.  In fact, it helps this method of composting making it work faster, more efficiently and flushes nutrients into the soil with the aid of the excess water.  Plus, you don’t have to mix it in.  Just toss it all into one of your pots, cover it and leave it till you are ready to either top it up again or collect soil.

Can I put the juiced pulp on top of the garden bed?

Mixing Wet Pulp into Topsoil

NO. Composting Juiced Pulp or any wet waste on top of a garden bed is in most instances a big NO NO.  It will not dehydrate as fast because it is so wet.  But it will attract all manner of flies and vermin and become quite stinky.    To counter this issue just mix it into the soil as you go and cover with a good garden cover or mulch (no sugar cane mulch).  The ground cover will filter any odours, stop the flies from getting to it, keep the moisture in the soil and the waste, making it easier for worms and other garden critters to break it down.   Thus, nourishing that part of the garden instantly is like a slow-release fertiliser.  

But if you really want to just toss it directly on your garden bed and not mix it into the soil you can. It’s entirely up to you. For instance, people in the bush often just toss scraps out in the bush anywhere that takes their fancy because it feeds the wildlife. Smell in the bush is not an issue as it is in suburban backyards, and they have plenty of space to let large piles of green waste rot down without the need for dedicated compost systems.

If you don’t have time to constantly dig holes to bury your waste, then plant some eco-eze Compots around the garden and just rotate filling them with your wet pulp and all your kitchen waste.  The wetter the better in the Eco-Eze Compot Composter.

What about in Winter?

Composting Juiced Pulp over winter is accomplished by lots of bacteria and other garden critters that aid the decomposition of wet waste when winter comes, even if the Soldier Flies or worms hibernate.    They all work together at different times to turn your scraps into sensational soil.  All composters slow down over winter but there are some tricks to getting more out of your Compots over winter such as soaking your waste in wastewater.  Other articles coming soon

Difference between wet/dry pulp buried, versus the Eco-Eze Compot, and other composters

Green – good / Red – not so good

Comparison Chart

Results of burying the pulp versus the eco-eze Compot.

  • Composting Juicer Pulp, wet or dry buried in the ground, decomposes at roughly the same rate
  • A Compot full of water will not decompose fast.  It will slow down the decomposition rate
  • No food waste was lost from inside the Compots during the flooding
  • Buried food waste could be washed away in a really bad flood.  Not proven in this experiment but the grass clippings covering the buried waste were partially washed away from the heavy rain
  • The winner overall was the wet waste composting the fastest inside the eco-eze Compot Composter and that was even without the aid of the Soldier Fly Larvae

All 4 Methods of Composting Juiced Pulp could be used depending on what you prefer to do, as all 4 produced a result at different speeds. In the end it is up to you what you prefer to do.

Composting with Black Soldier Flies
Super Fast composting Above Ground
Composting Five years of Waste
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