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Roaches in My Pile


June 1, 2020

I recently started a compost pile, but I find I'm having trouble with cockroaches in the pile.  I've tried adding more straw and leaves, turning more frequently and even sprinkling diatomaceous earth on top of the pile.  The diatomaceous earth doesn't do much good because of the moisture in the pile.  It really needs to be used on dry surfaces, but I was desperate!  Any suggestions?


Answer by JZ: Here are my thoughts: Nearly impossible to keep roaches from from an open bottom composting set up. Roaches are helpful to the process as they ingest organic material making it smaller and they may ingest other insects in the pile too.  Then they produce manure in the pile. Roaches usually stay put in the compost setup as it is moist, dark with plenty of nutrition. They are "at home” in the pile. The only insect-free compost setup is the closed Bokashi bucket method. To learn about that see Bokashi under Composting Info in our website menu.

Compost on.   Hope that this is helpful.

Answer by JZ:  Forgot to mention another “low insect” method is pit or trench composting. Organic material is buried deep in garden soil: 18” - 24” where it will decompose to humus. As the material is deep in the soil, there seems to be less visible insect activity.

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