[permaculture] using pee and poop

Rain Tenaqiya raincascadia at yahoo.com
Thu Oct 12 22:25:35 EDT 2006

I've been saving my urine and composting my poop for the past 7 years.  I do not bring in outside sources of nitrogen for my garden and developing food forests and I don't seem to have problems with N deficiency.  I use urine on my potted plants and this is all that a lot of species seem to need.  I use a 2 gallon vegetable oil container for pee, while my partner uses a one gallon juice container with a funnel.  Good contraptions for females are hard to come by and I still haven't come up with a satisfactory design.  I use the urine straight most of the time, especially during the wet Winter, usually avoiding contact with the plants' leaves, depending on the species.  Sometimes I pee in my sink and let it mix into the greywater system.  During the Winter when many plants are dormant or not actively growing, we sometimes add our urine to leaf piles, to store the nitrogen for the Spring.  I've even thought about getting a big tank to store it in.
  For poop, I use the Humanure Handbook method, both indoors and out.  I usually only let it compost for 3 to 6 months, however, and I sometimes use it on my vegetable beds.  My long-term goal is to use it only on trees and shrubs so that I can be an example of safe use for the general public to emulate.
  Because of our dry Summers, domesticated animals don't seem to help much with nutrient cycling compared to other climates.  The nitrogen in their feces just goes back into the air or overwhelms the system with the first rains when the grass hasn't started growing yet and gets leached out.  This makes the use and management of humun excretions even more important.

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