What to do with your Bokashi when you live in a flat

Photo: www.gardengreen.ca

Bokashi works just fine in an apartment, you fill your bucket under the kitchen sink just like anyone else. But every two or three weeks you’ll have a fully fermented bucket on your hands and the question is what to do about it then.

I thought this thread was interesting for just that reason, a woman in Australia who has had her Bokashi going for a while and really likes it, but needs a Bokashi-mate to take over the full buckets from her. She’s used what she can in her balcony planters and now needs someone she can drop off the full buckets to.

Bingo! Seems like she got a response pretty much straight away from someone living in the neighbourhood. And if it worked for her I imagine it would work for thousands like her. And already is I’m sure, people are great at working quietly behind the scenes and finding simple ways of solving what is, after all, a very simple problem.

For a gardener its a godsend to be able to get hold of someone else’s Bokashi buckets. You just can’t produce enough of it yourself. So ask around, maybe you have a colleague at work or a neighbour, in-law or football club parent who’d love to team up with you and your bucket on a regular basis. Who know, maybe you’ll even get a bunch of fresh carrots in return!

And if the handover itself is tricky, you can always transfer the contents to a tightly-knotted plastic bag. Tip it into your neighbour’s compost bin yourself. Or they could keep a biggish plastic box with a tight lid in their garage/carport/back porch that you could tip your Bokashi compost into while they are out. There’s many solutions, I’d love to hear yours!

11 responses to “What to do with your Bokashi when you live in a flat

  1. Looking at my neighbours’ neglected gardens, I think there’s plenty of scope for ‘borrowing’ a plot.

    But I’ve also thought of a worm-bin, for disposal; I’m certain one could freecycle vermiculite as fast as one could generate it.

  2. Hi Bill. Let us know how you get on there, it would be interesting to see if we have a new era of friendly neighbourly relations ahead of us, a little more give and take than many of us have seen for many years. Who knows, you may even inspire them to get cracking and do something with their backyards!
    I’ve heard a lot of good things about worms loving Bokashi, but what do mean by freecycle? Spreading it straight on closest garden to hand? Interesting.

  3. Ahh, freecycle! It’s a means for people to get rid of their unwanted stuff to people who do want it, and you’d be astonished what people want. Also, sometimes, by what people have and don’t want. Gardening supplies always go quickly.

    As far as the garden goes: I’ve negotiated with a neighbour that I can use hers – window-boxes don’t offer much scope! -, and we’ll share the produce. All I have to do now is get on with it.

  4. Ha! That’s really neat — hope we get to see a lot more freecycling then in due course.
    And I’m sure you’ll have a great garden soon! Something to really look forward to. Send us an update in a few months!

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  8. Dear Jenny,
    Searching high and low for some information, I stumbled upon your blog. It is great! I am looking for experience with a large-scale Bokashi facility in an apartment building, in London I think. I remember reading an article about it, with janitors using supermarket trolleys to wheel the bokashi bins about. Do you happen to know about this? I have been an avid bokashi user for years, and promotor as well – as a project manager for a centre for environmental education, I have done a test for 85 apartment building residents, how they would respond to use Bokashi indoors, while we supported them with a carrier service to replace the full bins. They were thrilled about it, after some 4 months. But this is quite labour-intensive, so now the municipality asks me for a less labour-intensive pratice of dealing with organic waste in flat buildings. I am from Deventer in the Netherlands. I hope you can help me! Next Thursday, 26, I am going to talk to the municipality again. It would be great to hear from you before that. And apart from that, to share experiences.
    Thank you so much,
    Many greetings,

    Estella Franssen

    • Hi Estella! Great to hear from you, your project sounds really interesting and just what we need much more of. Unfortunately I don’t have an answer for you but I do remember reading about something similar in London many years ago, they would have been pretty early. 2005 or so? Just possibly Tower Hamlets but the case I’m thinking of was in the city, or at least very central. They collected in the buckets and I think had some kind of big drum thing (rocket something?) where they converted it to soil before using it in the gardens around the flats. Don’t know if this is the same as you’re thinking of but I haven’t stumbled over it since. Could be that it fell to the bean-counters, expensive logistics even if the benefits are more than valuable. Could be worth checking Vokashi in New York if you haven’t come across it, they have a subscription-based collection system tied in to community gardening projects.
      I’d be really interested in what you find out (hopefully many others too!) so it would be great to stay in touch!
      Jenny

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