We have a Jersey house cow which I milk, by hand, every day.
I have a little routine where I fork up any mucky straw and cow pats and add it to a pile just by the entrance to her shelter. I then wash her udders down with warm water and then dry her with paper tissue. This also gets added to the heap.Then I sit down and milk.
After a couple of weeks I have three or four wheelbarrows full of this mix that I take over to our compost bins to go in the compost.
Straw is fairly expensive and the barley or wheat crop has most likely been treated with some chemical spray at some point so I am not happy to use straw.
I can get bales of rushes more cheaply so I am wondering if rushes compost well like the straw does?
We get some rushes in our hay, since we have low and wet meadows. I’d say they compost slower than straw, since they have a much harder surface and more likely contain more carbon. But if you’re not in a hurry, you can just let them compost longer, the result will be the same in the end.
But I also think that they might not suck up the manure as well as straw, again owing to the hard surface. Maybe you can mix straw and rushes?
I shall give them a go. I scoop up any muck each morning before I milk our cow. I shall try a fairly thick layer and see if it is enough to keep her from getting wet. She likes to do huge wees in the middle of her shelter so absorbancy is maybe an issue…. but if the rushes drain better than the straw maybe it might work out fine. I shall try it.
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