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Wednesday, October 20, 2021











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Subject: composting
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Author Messages
LeslieW1
(Virginia)

Posts:9


10/16/2021 7:19 AM  
Most of the homes in our HOA are on 1/10th acre lots. One member wants to install a "compost tumbler." Has anyone dealt with composting on individual lots or the possibility of a community compost facility.

KellyM3
(North Carolina)

Posts:1786


10/16/2021 7:23 AM  
Hi Leslie,

I'd view a compost facility as another amenity that will require regular maintenance, like a machine.

Those residential compost bins don't seem very large and I don't see why they'd be an issue if responsibly self-managed.

SheliaH
(Indiana)

Posts:4221


10/16/2021 7:29 AM  
Our church community garden has one - right now, it's the size that would be used in a small garden, but we're hoping to add more.

As Kelly said, maintenance is key - not everything is appropriate for compost and you can create a lot of problems with vermin and smell if you don't take care of it. If you have a resident interested in this, have him or her do the research, starting with polling homeowners to see if anyone's interested. He or she also needs to look into size, cost (perhaps interested homeowners can pay a separate fee for maintenance?), who's going to check it regularly, possible signage advising people what is and isn't appropriate, distributing the compost once it's ready, when that should be done, etc. Report all this to the board with recommendations.
PatJ1
(North Carolina)

Posts:249


10/16/2021 7:48 AM  
Leslie,

Is there anything in the HOA'S governing documents that restrict an owner from composting in any format? Tumbler, open pen, worm composter?

Board members are volunteers. Many have no idea what they're doing. Educate them. Don't beat them up.
LeslieW1
(Virginia)

Posts:9


10/16/2021 8:02 AM  
Nothing in our governing documents on composting. Covenants have a prohibition on doing anything on or in a residential unit which may be, or may become, an annoyance or nuisance to the Association or any of its Members.

There is neighborhood concern that, without constant attention by an individual owner to maintain the necessary balance between kitchen and yard waste, a compost tumbler will smell and attract bears, foxes and rodents. We have all three in the vicinity and, to keep them away, neighbors have largely removed their birdfeeders.

LetA
(Nevada)

Posts:1425


10/16/2021 1:06 PM  
unless your governing documents in some way prohibit it. Composting is good and produces great soil for planting a garden. When I was a kid my neighbor composted everything from dog droppings
grass clippings and egg shells. I wish we had the climate here in Vegas to compost. The only thing I compost currently are egg shells and coffee grounds.

I have seen those small compost bins. It looks like it takes up a smaller space than a small LP BBQ grill. Are they any good?
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:10523


10/16/2021 3:51 PM  
I have one that goes on kitchen counter. Has some bio degradable bags put in it. Makes it handy for small household stuff. Our city also has a composting group on Facebook. May want to see if your city has a composting program. If you have a botantical Garden they may be able to guide you to a suggestion.

Otherwise, having lived in a small yard composting would be a bit hard to do. Plus have to consider the smell if one doesn't do it right. I think you can make one in a 55 gallon trash can.

A good thing to do also is to raise worms. Sounds odd but worms are a good business. I would not mix it with any HOA funds. Just maybe use it for like a community pot luck or fund a neighborhood watch.

Former HOA President
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:11514


10/17/2021 9:26 AM  
Posted By LeslieW1 on 10/16/2021 8:02 AM
Nothing in our governing documents on composting. Covenants have a prohibition on doing anything on or in a residential unit which may be, or may become, an annoyance or nuisance to the Association or any of its Members.

There is neighborhood concern that, without constant attention by an individual owner to maintain the necessary balance between kitchen and yard waste, a compost tumbler will smell and attract bears, foxes and rodents. We have all three in the vicinity and, to keep them away, neighbors have largely removed their birdfeeders.




Leslie

I do not see a compost barrel drawing more critters then a trash barrel will.
PatJ1
(North Carolina)

Posts:249


10/17/2021 10:01 AM  
We are condo's and everything outside is community property. Once had a resident dig a hole outside their back door and start throwing everything into it including their dog's poop. We had to shut that down. Had it been one of those small tumble bins on their back patio we probably would have never known it was there.

They then had a worm compost tower on their rear patio and it remained until their interest in their project went away, but we didn't have any problems with it since it wasn't a violation.

Our governing documents allow for vegetable gardens within 6 feet of the rear of our condo's. They also allow the planting of annuals in the front of our units.

Did the member approach the board for permission, or was it just mentioned in passing? Unless it become a nuisance that could fall under a violation, I can't see how the HOA can prohibit it on a single family lot.

We've tossed around the idea of a community garden and compost pile. Turned out nobody was really interested an, thankfully, the idea passed. Seemed no one thought about water access, deer fencing, and who was going to maintain.

People can come up with good concerns, but fail to think about how to implement/maintain them.








Board members are volunteers. Many have no idea what they're doing. Educate them. Don't beat them up.
SheliaH
(Indiana)

Posts:4221


10/17/2021 11:24 AM  
Nope, that's supposed to be the BOARD'S job, remember - someone suggests (or demands) something, and poof, the board waves its collective hand and makes it so!

Back to composting tumblers - one thing you DON'T toss in there is dog poop. In fact, I don't think any carnivore poop is supposed to go in a compost bin. Unfortunately, people don't read and figure it's all waste anyway and use it like an extra trash can.

I just saw a YouTube video on using leaves in composting and other gardening tasks, such as mulch. One idea was to gather up the fallen leaves and put it in a homemade bin made out of posts and chicken wire. Over winter, the stuff slowly breaks down and can be added to soil in the spring to build it up or place atop a conventional compost pile or in a bin.


While this homeowner is doing research (tell him without it, the board can't and won't consider the idea), he might look around on the YouTube site and see if he can find similar ideas that may require a little less maintenance.
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