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After shovelling up a pile of husks under a bird feeder, I found that the bottom of the pile had turned to compost. Lots of lovely red compost worms in there too. So I've put the pile of sunflower husks and sprouting seeds in a big old seed bag in the hope that they will rot down and eventually give me extra lovely compost. Is this a good idea or is it pointless?



Not pointless at all- why waste it? Just wondering why you didn't just add it t the compost bin?

11 Jan, 2022


Steragram, I mulched around a Fatsia with the wormy compost. As for the rest which is made up of seeds, sprouts and husks, I think it would take too long to rot down and be out of line with the green waste, which i assume breaks down more quickly.
I could tip it in to the bottom of the one I empty in spring. Thankyou for reassuring me that it's ok to use at all. This is what my real concern was.

12 Jan, 2022


Not only safe to use, but it sounds like an excellent compost starter. My only concern is the weedy nature of some of the components of some bird seed mixtures.

13 Jan, 2022


Yes but if you get seedlings popping up you can surely just hoe shallowly round the area?

13 Jan, 2022


Yep! Catch them young, though--don't wait 6 months, like some of my customers. :)

14 Jan, 2022


So from what you say Tug and Stera, some of the shoots are unsuitable for composting? My seeds are solely black sunflower and have broken down well into black compost.
I don't use seed mixes at all because too much gets thrown out by the birds.

14 Jan, 2022


Sunflowers would be no problem at all, but some feeds for finches are made up of thistle seed. A few thistles blooming about the garden will attract native bees and butterflies, but some species of thistle can be thuggish weeds!

15 Jan, 2022


From my own experience over the years I wouldn't add it to the compost bin, I learnt that the hard way, however its certainly not pointless, the birds will love scrabbling around in it, do you have a spare part of the garden tucked away whereby you can place it and keep on top of any weeds that will grow from it, obviously full of nourishment which has encouraged the worms in the first place...

15 Jan, 2022


I find the sludgy waste from my sunflower seeds certainly doesn't look pretty! However what survives and pops up are very sturdy little sunflower seedlings which pull out very easily and are big enough not to be overlooked and spread eventually. Now we seem to have a few dry days I'll get cleaning up the sludge. It'll go into my black compost bin. I had an expensive wormery which was more trouble than it was worth so chucked the contents worms and all into an empty black bin, without a bottom, where they look after themselves and need no pampering at all. They do a super, very speedy job of of converting any kitchen waste, paper and cardboard, egg cartons etc I throw in, into beautiful crumbly manure. They're not even daunted by sub zero temps, just migrate down a bit. They are the red wriggler variety so they don't spread into the garden, preferring composting waste on top instead. How did I get to red wrigglers from the birdseed topic 😏 I didn't mean to hijack your thread Merlin

16 Jan, 2022


Resinone, no worries. I love the red wrigglers and am happy that the like the black sunflower seed compost. My wormery contents got chucked into a compost bin too. Much easier.
Tug, that's a good idea and I don't mind 'weeds' which are wild flowers after all and I encourage them.
Thankyou all.

18 Jan, 2022

How do I say thanks?

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