A couple of weeks ago I got to do something fun. Talk about Bokashi on webradio!
There’s a woman in Montana who does a web radio show on gardening. (What else could she possibly write about given that her name is Kate Gardner?!). She called and we talked. And talked…and talked. Probably got a bit carried away with it all actually but it was such fun. And in the end she knocked it up into a nice little session called Bokashi 101.
So if you’ve got an hour to spare load it up on your iPod and take the dog out for a walk.
It was really fun talking to Kate. But what I learnt is that it’s hard to keep your thoughts in a straight line when you’re being asked questions. Running a course is much easier! So there were a couple of really important things I would have liked to bring up if I’d only remembered.
And they are this:
1. That the topsoil on our planet is fast fading away. Some estimates are that we are losing 1% per year. Yikes. So whatever we do in this generation of ours, we have to make sure we start building top soil again. Every bucket of Bokashi you dig down adds a bucket of topsoil to the planet. A bucket for mankind and not for the landfill…
2. That the single most important thing about Bokashi is that it puts carbon into the soil where we need it and not into the atmosphere, where we absolutely don’t. Each bucket you dig down is a sort of micro carbon sink. A bucket of carbon in the soil is a good thing. Half a bucket of carbon in the air is not a good thing. (What happens in a regular compost pile or even a landfill pile is that almost half the organic waste goes up into the air in the form of greenhouse gases. Much of it as methane which is a far worse gas than carbon dioxide.)
Today (on my dog walk!) I listened to the next installment of the Bokashi story on Kate’s web radio show. Here she’s talking to an inspiring couple in Great Falls, Montana, who are working hard to set up large-scale Bokashi composting units in schools and food banks in the area. There’s a lot of trial and error behind how Michael and MJ do it and it’s interesting to hear their story. Everything we’re doing with Bokashi is a sort of pioneer thing, a lot of product development, and the more we can compare notes and share ideas the better it’s going to be.
Anyhow it’s well worth listening to their story. If you’re curious about the nuts and bolts of how they build their bins check their website. Basically they’re using shipping pallets, insulation foam and plastic to build modular, insulated bins. Food waste, wood chips and Bokashi bran in; three months later soil out. Really cool concept, and I think somewhere here is the start of what we’re going to be doing all over in a few years time.
Got your iPod handy? Got your dog handy? Take a nice walk in the autumn leaves and enjoy!
Here’s the link: http://webtalkradio.net/2011/10/24/the-manic-gardener-–-kitchen-composting-bokashi-101/
And here’s the link to Kate’s blog, The Manic Gardener. Worth reading!!