Compost Cover

ComposTex Compost Covers - Breathable and Water Shedding

Exceptional strength and tear resistance

UV-light protected

4 to 15-plus year durability

Water Shedding: 99% or better

Air Permeability: 200 to 400 cfm

Lightweight

For home compost piles, commercial windrows and low-tech worm farms

ComposTex Compost Covers (also known as “compost fleece”) is a completely breathable, non-woven fabric made of 100% UV-resistant polypropylene that sheds rainfall and snow melt from compost piles and covered windrows. At BioKai we even use it for a fast to install, low-tech worm farming system straight on the ground.

Get a Compost Cover here

Applications

Since 1994 ComposTex has been used on thousands of compost projects around the world. The most common use of ComposTex is to protect active, curing and finished compost piles from excess rainfall, thereby preventing excess moisture conditions, which in-turn helps ensure optimal aerobic microbial activity, reduce unpleasant odors associated with saturated/anaerobic conditions, and reduce soluble nutrient losses. In some cases, ComposTex is also used to protect piles from windblown weed seeds and to limit access to flies and scavenging animals.

FAQ

  • ComposTex compost covers are a completely breathable, non-woven fabric made of 100% UV-resistant polypropylene that sheds rainfall from covered windrows which reduces odors, leachate, and costs. They are an inexpensive but highly effective method of providing moisture control during the composting process. The covers are made from “non-woven” polypropylene fibers that create a lightweight yet highly durable blanket which sheds up to 100% of the precipitation and snow-melt off a compost windrow(s) while remaining completely permeable to oxygen, carbon dioxide, and water vapor.

  • Although it’s counterintuitive that a breathable fabric could shed rainfall, this is accomplished through capillary action, gravity, and the properties of cohesion and surface tension between water molecules. As water is absorbed into and saturates the fabric, it’s “wicked” down the gravitational gradient to the cover’s bottom edge.

  • ComposTex has been used on thousands of compost projects around the world since 1994. The most common use of ComposTex is to protect active, curing and finished compost piles from excess rainfall.

  • Excess moisture in a compost system not only displaces oxygen that’s essential for optimum composting, but also increases the cost of screening, bagging, and transporting the finished compost. Besides avoiding these problems and their costs, additional benefits of protecting active, curing, and finished compost with ComposTex include:

    1. ComposTex can help dry out compost with a high moisture content, by taking the covers OFF during periods of hot, dry weather and putting them back on during heavy rainfall events. Of course, turning the windrows occasionally after the surface has dried out will further enhance this drying process.
    2. By protecting windrow(s) from excess rainfall, ComposTex can eliminate the unpleasant odors that would otherwise be generated by saturated conditions.
    3. ComposTex serves as an alternative to wood chips or finished compost as a cover for aerated static windrows.
    4. ComposTex can reduce unpleasant odors by trapping odor-containing gases within the fiber matrix of the fiber.
    5. ComposTex protects finished compost from contamination with windblown weed seeds.
  • In situations where windrows could become saturated from excess rainfall and/or snowmelt which creates  anaerobic conditions, ComposTex prevents those conditions and the unpleasant odors associated with them.

    While we are not aware of research that would explain how ComposTex can reduce the “release” of odors even though the fabric is permeable to gases, we do have a few customers successfully using ComposTex for that purpose. Two theories regarding the ability of ComposTex to prevent the release of unpleasant odors are:

    1. ComposTex’s tightly bound matrix of polypropylene fibers acts as a filtration media which captures odor molecules, and/or the water vapor containing these molecules.
    2. By protecting the surface of the windrows from the wind, ComposTex is also preventing dust and/or odors from being transported away from the windrows.
    3. Is there a certain side of the fabric that should be facing up or down?
    4. While there’s both a shiny and a rough (ie. fibrous) side of ComposTex, there’s no measurable difference in terms of water shedding between these two different sides. However, putting the shiny side down will reduce the amount of compost ingredients that could stick to rough side. and also provides some additional friction (grab) between the cover and the anchors used to hold the cover down. Having the rough side facing up also provides some additional friction between the cover and whatever anchors or weights that are being used to secure it from the wind.
  • While there’s both a shiny/smooth and a soft (ie. fibrous) side of ComposTex, there’s no measurable difference in terms of water shedding between these two different sides. However, putting the smooth side down will reduce the amount of compost ingredients that could stick to the soft side and also provides some additional friction (grab) between the cover and the anchors used to hold the cover down. Having the soft side facing up also provides some additional friction between the cover and whatever anchors or weights that are being used to secure it from the wind.

This is why we make hot/thermal compost at KoruKai Herb Farm

Kills weed seeds
Destroys pathogens
Creates better drainage in heavy soils
More water storage in sandy soils
Increases aeration and the oxygen availability for the roots
Increases activity and the number of soil microorganisms
Makes soil darker and so it warms up earlier in spring
Produces healthy plants that are more resistant to disease and pests
Creates a complex soil food web

Read more about it in the link below.

THE ART AND SCIENCE OF THERMAL COMPOSTING
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