Posts Tagged ‘bokashi compost’

Bocashi as a type of compost (rural) (Honduras)

January 9, 2011

HONDURAS – Making Bocashi Fertilizer

…  The basic recipe is to take a source of dry manure (chicken and goat) and mix it with a source of carbon (coffee hulls) and some soil and then start adding the extras. … three bags of ground charcoal, a bag of rice germ, a bag of agricultural lime, a gallon of molasses, and also a bag of finished bocashi as a starter. You mix it all together with enough water for 50% moisture and then you mix and monitor over then next 7 days. Essentially you have made a big pile of pickles for the earth. Not only does the bocashi add activated minerals, but the main function is to improve the microbial balance in the soil. It is sort of like an acidophillus pill for the soil. …  

Source: Farmer to Farmer Blog


Natural Fertilizer. Bocashi in Central America

September 27, 2010

The soil’s second chance

One strategy to replenish and maintain soil fertility involves the creation of bocashi. This highly effective and inexpensive natural fertiliser can be made from readily-available materials, including manure, coffee pulp, or rice hulls, together with yeast and molasses. These are then mixed with healthy soil. The yeast feeds on the molasses during a 15-day fermentation and decomposition process, aided by mixing manually twice-a-day. The bocashi mix is then added to crops, and yields either match or improve upon those obtained with chemical fertilisers – at a fraction of the cost.

A young farmer inspects his maize crop, which has benefited from the application of bocashi


Source: Learning not to burn – transforming land and livelihoods in Central America

(Note: This is another example of “cutting the EM hype”, as the method described is a simple farm compost recipe. It involves fermenting to avoid putrefaction. No more, no less. In this case, using yeast.)

Bokashi Compost (Nicaragua)

May 27, 2010


ingredients for making 16 sacks of compost in 15 days.
5 sacks rice hulls or dried grass or leaves
5 sacks fertile soil
5 sacks cow or chicken manure or both
1.5 sacks carbon (charcoal from fire)
23 lbs. semolina
10 lbs. lime
5 lbs. sugar
172 lb. yeast
optional: spent coffee grounds

choose a spot protected from the sun, wind, and rain or prepare outdoors and cover with black plastic. Work in a site with firm ground bemeath.

Layer the materials, keeping in mind a good mix between green and brown materials. Water should be added to drier layers, not building the pile higher than 50 centimenters.
Mix the sugar and yeast in water and pour lightly and homogenously over the top of pile and mix to spread the mixture to all parts of pile, thus beginning the fermentation.
Once finished, begin to turn the pile twice daily for 5 days and then once daily for 7 days.
Let the pile sit for 3 days.
The pile should always feel moist and warm in the center.
Test pile to make sure everything is well mixed and decomposed.
Place compost into sacks, protected from sun and rain until used.
The compost should not be left for more than 3 months.

Source: Puddle Jumping in Nicaragua Abono Bocashi

(Note: This is another example of “cutting the EM hype”, as the method described is a simple farm compost recipe. It involves fermenting to avoid putrefaction. No more, no less. In this case, using yeast.)

Many thanks to long gone !!

April 17, 2010

The original site for Newspaper Bokashi Secrets and an alternative to the expensive bran and EM Hype, was  http : / /   It  was temporarily down during March and April 2010, but  is now definitely gone. In its place is just another site selling that expensive bran and bucket hype. In appreciation of the work of the author of that  original site,  see his Original posts (Google cache for February 2010) below, reorganized.  OR download  Bokashicomposting.pdf    

For a more comprehensive  version on bocashi, rural and urban (in Spanish)  
see  Bokashi (Pre) Compostaje domiciliario

Bokashi in School Waste Management (New Zealand)

September 7, 2009

School stories on waste education  (Nelson City Council, New Zealand)

A bokashi victory              September 2009

Two years ago Victory school had a problem with the large amount of fruit scraps, generated as a result of their involvement in the Fruit in Schools Programme, run by the District Health Board. This programme provides free fruit to students at school every day to boost the children’s nutrition levels.

large-scale bokashi system  provided the answer to their fruit scrap problem. This system takes care of citrus and other fruit scraps, as well as ham sandwiches and all kinds of lunch time food scraps not suitable for other systems.

Nelson City Council donated two large 120-litre drums to the school for use as large-scale bokashi containers. One drum is used at a time and is dug down into the ground in a suitable spot within the school garden. The soil removed to create a hole for the drum is piled around the base and is used to cover the bokashi mix once the hole is full and the drum is removed. This part of the garden is then planted after a couple of weeks. The drums are rotated around the sites in the garden on a regular basis.

Selected senior students are on collection duty for the term. They collect fruit scraps in buckets at the end of the school day and carry them over to the big bokashi drum in the community garden. They usually get about six full buckets of scraps from a total of 18 collection buckets located in each classroom. The students tip the buckets into the drum, pack the food scraps down, and sprinkle in a handful of bokashi compost-zing on top, before making sure the lid is put back on tightly. The school funds the ongoing cost of the compost-zing activator for their bokashi system.

“Before we had the bokashi system, we were having a big problem as there were just too many fruit scraps and our compost bin was overflowing. Also the type of waste was not suitable for composting – some days we just had banana skins, other days too much orange peel. The bokashi system makes it easy,” says teacher Judy-Anne.

Cutting the Hype on EM Bokashi (0)

January 19, 2009

oodchuck] (…)

Bokashi compliments vermiculture.

I noticed at a neighbors farm a few years ago that compost worms were thriving in corn silage that had spilled down around the outside of the silo, I had always read that acidity was bad for worms and that they wouldn’t do well in low PH, turns out that was a lie, not only were they thriving they were converting the fermented silage into castings at a rapid rate.
It wasn’t long after that that I stumbled upon the bokashi thing while searching composting videos on youtube.
I immediately said to myself, all this is is ensiling, it was then that I started experimenting.
So, not only is the bokashi broken down fairly rapidly by the worms, the waste is also stabilized for long periods of time so I can ration it out to the worms. I only wish I had more worms to work with.

There are other advantages…..bokashi is impregnated with digestive bacteria, mostly lactobacillus so it breaks down very rapidly…..convenience…..there are minimal foul smells……no fruit flies or other varmints…….for those living in colder climates the stabilized bokashi compost can be banked in winter months and added to worm bins, regular compost piles or buried in the ground or containers in the spring…to name a few…….