Getting started (Part Two) Purifying the lactobacillus.

March 13, 2010

September 30th, 2008                            Source: the now extinct  http :  / /  bokashicomposting.com/

Put the finished rice water solution in a bigger container and add 10 parts milk (I use skim). DO NOT seal tightly, the gases must be able to escape.
Allow 14 days for a complete ferment, most of the solids in the milk will float to the top revealing the yellowish serum.
Strain off the solids.

You now have purified lactobacillus serum.

serum

Download complete instructions: Bokashicomposting.pdf

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Getting started (Part Three) Newspaper bokashi.

March 12, 2010

September 30th, 2008                   Source: the now extinct  http  :  /  /bokashicomposting.com/

Instead of using expensive bran I ferment newspaper to use between the layers of compost in the bucket.

I take one part lactobacillus serum to one part molasses to six parts water. (label and freeze any extra serum)

I soak a  bunch of newspapers thoroughly in the mixture and drain well.

newspaper soaking

I place the soaked newspapers in a 2 gallon zip lock baggie, remove all the air and seal.

soaked newspaper in ziplock bag

Place in a cool dark spot and wait 10 days to 2 weeks to get a good fermentation.

After the fermentation process I separate and dry the newspaper. It’s now the carrier for the bacteria.

Download complete instructions: Bokashicomposting.pdf

Yogurt whey as a starter culture.

March 11, 2010

September 30th, 2008              Source: the late  http :  /  /  bokashicomposting.com/  (extinct)

If you don’t want to take the time to collect your own free indigenous lactobacillus starter culture (Parts One and Two), you can use live active yogurt whey, the yellowish liquid drained when making yogurt cheese.

Simply replace the one part of lacto serum in step three with the yogurt whey.

Download complete instructions: Bokashicomposting.pdf

Starting a newspaper bokashi bucket.

March 10, 2010

October 1st, 2008                       Source : the now extinct: http  :  /  /bokashicomposting.com/

After the bokashi newspaper has thoroughly dried, it’s now the carrier for the digestive lacto bacteria.

I bought inexpensive snap-top buckets from Wal-Mart for about $5.00 each, the lids snap on and off easily, especially with the addition of a little olive oil rubbed around the rim.

I don’t bother with a drain….I place 1 to 2 inches of dry absorbent material in the bottom of the bucket (peat, shredded newspaper, or clean sawdust) and pack well.

To start the bucket I place a piece of the bokashi newspaper on top of the absorbent material, just enough to cover….then I start adding waste (chopped up)…up to a 1/2 inch layer at a time…add a piece of newspaper between each and every layer until the bucket is full….packing each layer well helps ensure a good fermentation. (I use a potato masher.)

That’s about all there is to it.

Oh, I’ve been experimenting with adding a tablespoon of healthy garden soil to the bucket after it’s started well (4-5 days) to culture more of the naturally occurring anaerobic digestive microorganisms, but I’m convinced it’s not necessary. The bokashi compost with just the lacto decomposed quickly in the garden and in my worm bins.

Download complete instructions: Bokashicomposting.pdf

Newspaper bokashi secrets.

March 9, 2010

October 17th, 2008                  Source : the now extinct: http  :  /  /bokashicomposting.com/

Well, not really secrets, mostly common sense.

I’ve never had a failed newspaper bokashi bucket when following these simple rules.

1. Start the bucket with a 1 to 2 inch layer of absorbent materials. (shredded newspaper, peat, sawdust or something similar.) This layer will soak up any excess nutrient drainage. (There’s nothing wrong with faucet buckets, other than the expense. I just prefer to keep things as cheap and easy as possible.)

2. Start your newspaper bokashi bucket with a layer of high carbohydrate waste. This jump starts the fermentation process ensuring success.

3. Place a piece of newspaper between each layer of waste. Make the layers no more than 1/2 an inch think. This ensures that the beneficial bacteria will spread throughout the waste quickly.

4. Chop the waste into small pieces, if possible. This gives the bacteria a larger surface area to feed upon. It also leads to faster final decomposition or digestion when your bokashi is buried, added to worm bins or added to an aerobic compost pile.

5. Compress the layers of waste tightly. This helps exclude air and helps transfer beneficial bacteria throughout the waste rapidly. (I place a piece of bokashi newspaper on top of the waste and press with a potato masher, there’s no mess as with bran bokashi. )

6. Never add spoiled waste to a bokashi bucket. Rotten and moldy waste will introduce rogue organisms that can cause a bucket to fail.

7. Always close the lid lightly to exclude air.

8. Do not add excess amounts of fluids to your bokashi bucket.

9. Collect waste throughout the day and add to the bucket at the end of the day. This minimizes exposure to outside air.

10. Add waste at least once a day. It’s usually not a problem to skip a day or two occasionally, once the bucket is well established.

Good luck with your newspaper bokashi!!!!

Download complete instructions: Bokashicomposting.pdf

Newspaper bokashi, instead of expensive bran

March 8, 2010

 Source : the now extinct: http  :  /  /bokashicomposting.com/

Instead of using expensive bran I ferment newspaper to use between the layers of compost in the bucket.

I take one part lactobacillus serum to one part molasses to six parts water. (label and freeze any extra serum)

I soak a  bunch of newspapers thoroughly in the mixture and drain well.

I place the soaked newspapers in a 2 gallon zip lock baggie, remove all the air and seal.

Place in a cool dark spot and wait 10 days to 2 weeks to get a good fermentation.

After the fermentation process I separate and dry the newspaper. It’s now the carrier for the bacteria.

After the bokashi newspaper has thoroughly dried, it’s now the carrier for the digestive lacto bacteria.

I bought inexpensive snap-top buckets from Wal-Mart for about $5.00 each, the lids snap on and off easily, especially with the addition of a little olive oil rubbed around the rim.

I don’t bother with a drain….I place 1 to 2 inches of dry absorbent material in the bottom of the bucket (peat, shredded newspaper, or clean sawdust) and pack well.

To start the bucket I place a piece of the bokashi newspaper on top of the absorbent material, just enough to cover….then I start adding waste (chopped up)…up to a 1/2 inch layer at a time…add a piece of newspaper between each and every layer until the bucket is full….packing each layer well helps ensure a good fermentation. (I use a potato masher.)

That’s about all there is to it.

Oh, I’ve been experimenting with adding a tablespoon of healthy garden soil to the bucket after it’s started well (4-5 days) to culture more of the naturally occurring anaerobic digestive microorganisms, but I’m convinced it’s not necessary. The bokashi compost with just the lacto decomposed quickly in the garden and in my worm bins.

Download complete instructions: Bokashicomposting.pdf

Make your own FREE bokashi starter.

March 7, 2010

Summary of Google cache (February 2010) for Bokashi Composting. Newspaper Bokashi Secrets, the now extinct: http  :  /  /bokashicomposting.com/

Making your own bokashi starter culture in place of commercially available EM is incredibly easy.

My goal from the start was to produce bokashi compost without the use of expensive EM, bran or fancy buckets.

The most important component of the commercial EM in relation to bokashi is lactobacillus bacteria, the others are secondary (if at all necessary) and can be cultured in the bucket when conditions are favorable.

I culture my own lactobacillus serum starting with a rice wash water solution.

Making the serum is amazingly simple.

  • I mix one part rice thoroughly with two parts water (1/2 a cup to one cup).
  • Mix thoroughly and vigorously.
  • Drain.
  • The resulting water should be cloudy.
  • Place the rice water in a container with 50-75% head space allowing plenty of air to circulate.
  • Cover lightly (air should be able to move in and out of the container) and place in a cool dark spot for 5-8 days.
  • At the end of the wait the mixture should smell mildly sour.
  • Strain out any particles.
  • Put the finished rice water solution in a bigger container and add 10 parts milk (I use skim).
  • DO NOT seal tightly, the gases must be able to escape.
  • Allow 14 days for a complete ferment, most of the solids in the milk will float to the top revealing the yellowish serum.
  • Strain off the solids.
  • You now have purified lactobacillus serum.

[Summary, Google cache for http  :  /  /bokashicomposting.com/]   Download reorganized version of that site

Cutting the hype on EM.

March 5, 2010
Apr 29, 08
[start quote]  [cab] (…) a simple ensilaging process for cooked food will be better and easier to control, [in] that the ensilaged, low pH waste will have most of the protein in it dribble out simply in the liquor, making for a handy high nitrogen plant feed, and that the ensilaged food waste should degrade marvellously when buried. It would be an easier approach, if it works.  [[It does.]]
Question:   What would an ensilaging process be – simple or otherwise?
Answer:   [cab] Crudely, in this instance it would mean selecting an appropriate lactic acid producing bacteria and giving it a carbon source it can use (probably glucose, although I’m sure it would do fine on ordinary sugar). It uses the sugar and other nutrients from the mix, outcompeting the other bacteria quite readily in this environment as long as you keep it close to anaerobic. The production of lactic acid eventually drops the pH to a point where the bacteria stop doing a great deal and not a lot else can grow either, and at a low pH most of the available protein in the waste will be lysed out. The remaining solid matter should be a bit spongier, and far more readily degraded by organisms in the soil such as assorted fungi and actinomycete bacteria, i.e. it’ll rot down pretty quickly and not fester with nasty smelly bacteria. [end quote]  
Date: Apr 29, 08            

Cutting the hype on EM (II)

March 4, 2010

[start quote]       [cab] (…) Bokashi, as it has come to mean here, is not a composting process. At all. It doesn’t make compost, but it does convert material that can’t be composted because it’ll go rancid or attract beasties into something that you can bury and ignore, and it also produces a nutritious liquid plant food. 

But the magical ‘effective microorganisms’ of which the sales pitch would have you believe are, in my view, rather spurious. 

The best results I’ve obtained have been by taking a fresh load (a little kitchen composter pot sized amount) of mixed kitchen waste, mixing in a tablespoon of glucose from a health food shop, and some Lactobacillus bacteria powder, of the type that you get from a health food shop (and which a home salami maker may have lurking in the fridge!).

Mix up, put in a tightly sealed filled plastic container (a bokashi composter) with a tap on the bottom, and leave it for three weeks. 

When it works (which has been all but twice) you’ve basically got a bacterial de-proteination of the waste.

Or, in other words, the Lactobacillus bacteria have gone nuts, eaten the glucose, and then gone looking for more goodies.

The pH has dropped to a point where much of the protein has lysed out of the food waste and is sitting in the liquid (tap that off as plant food, needs diluting a lot of course), and the solid matter smells just a little unpleasantly sweet.

Bury the waste in a corner of the allotment somewhere and ignore it. It’ll rot down, and worms will eat it. 

When it doesn’t work, it goes rank and horrid and you’ll need a strong stomach to deal with it. 

Using the bokashi ‘bran’ has been no more or less successful than a spoonfull of bacteria powder and some glucose.

I conclude, therfore, that the process (at least with the waste we’ve been producing!) is very much akin to ensilaging.

[end quote]              Date: Jan 27, 10    

Source:  http://forum.downsizer.net/Bokashi_Buckets_about49483.html

Cutting the hype on EM bokashi (III)

March 4, 2010

Aug 07, 07   
[start quote]   [cab] My gut feeling is that you could obtain a very similar result with glucose and lots of Lactobacillus, and that whats really happening is that the bran is being broken down to sugar thats being acted on by lactic acid bacteria, thats getting the pH low enough to cause the proteins to come into solution, what you’re left with is sort of part ensilaged, part decomposed, and its simply a means to jump start the whole decomposition process. And my gut feeling is that the whole ‘EM’ thing is rather simpler than they’re letting on. 

(…)
In principle, if it is primarily ensilaging, then yes, its a good prelude to composting.     [end quote]