Sunday, July 18, 2010

More compost update

I went to check on my compost two weeks ago to see if I should turn it again. When I remove the cover this time, I discovered tonnes of big, fat (ok, this is not for the squeamish!) maggots!!! They were all having a big, fat maggot party! Ewww!

Well, I sort of expected it as I have read somewhere before that a compost heap that is too wet may attract some of these creepy crawlies. I must have incorporated too much vegetable peelings and fruit skins in there without adding enough 'browns' such as dried leaves, twigs and branches. The other possibility is I may have watered the compost more than I needed to in a humid country - I have yet to search for a composting site from a tropical country for help in this area. One last cause could be due to the addition of egg shells. Some suggests to wash the egg shells before crushing them into the pile while others say just dump them in. I did the latter which might explain how I created maggot haven!

On the other hand, I did also read that maggots help with the decomposing process and their by products are actually great addition to the compost! We went back to our hometown over the weekend and when we got back, the compost heap has reduced in height quite obviously thanks to all the action going on! So the question is, to keep or not to keep our little friends (or foes) the maggots??

Anyway, I have stopped watering the heap of compost and added more dry fallen fir tree leaves into it and gave it a little stir (sorry to be such a party pooper, Mr and Miss Maggots) to dry the heap a little. I actually prefer the heap decomposing without the sight of these wriggly stuffs. I haven't seen them today after changing the moisture level of the composition. Let's see if it is bye-bye maggots in the next few weeks!

Note: After writing this post, I did a quick search and found Composting in Singapore, a great sight for beginners starting a compost with tonnes of pictures and info. They mentioned that our hot and humid weather is perfect for composting (thus I shall stop watering the heap and let it decompose under our brilliant tropical climate naturally). They also mentioned that the larvaes of Black Soldier Flies (BSFs) are compost friends! Ok maggot-y thingys, you can stay. But can you like remain at the bottom of the compost heap so I don't get goosebumps every time I need to remove the cover and throw in more materials to feed you? Oh, and bravo to Composting in Singapore for their effort in starting a compost bin even though they live in an HDB flat in Singapore as well as sharing all the great info on their site!

Note 2: Sorry no pictures as I can only bear to lift the cover up, dump more materials in and close it back. Maybe when I gather more guts next time round!


  1. Mama L, you didn't mention whether the compost heap with maggots smelled. Does it stink?

  2. Hi Angeline,
    Like what I said in my first update, the compost heap remained sweet-smelling even though the maggots were chomping away in there. Are you starting one?


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