[permaculture] using pee and poop

Robyn Williamson robinet at aapt.net.au
Sat Oct 14 04:17:39 EDT 2006

G'day Rain

An Austrian chef once told me that the best chinese gardeners collect 
urine of pre-menstrual females for their special gardens, I didn't ask 
about dilution rates because my jaw was on the table at the time (it 
was a long time ago) but I am now very glad to hear that you have used 
it straight on potted plants that are already wet with no ill effects.  
I would tend to dilute it abt 1/10 with grey or fresh water for use on 
dry potted ornamental plants.  Never tried it myself but assume by 
rotating it around a number of potted specimens there wouldn't be any 
odour as the plants could be expected to take up the N which is readily 
available in soluble form, just like in the ground really, you wouldn't 
start getting odours until you're overdoing it in one spot, n'est-ce 
pas?  have you ever tried it on indoor plants?  I was thinking of 
getting a big palm tree for my room.

I am working on a container design for myself at the moment and have 
been using a square-ish 1 litre milk container squeezed diagonally at 
the top so it fits comfortably.  It is only good for one though and has 
to be emptied into something else in between uses, I currently use a 
bucket of straw.  The wax coated cardboard container easily loses its 
shape too and i've had a couple of accidents.

I discovered that gardenlen has an easy guide to building your own 
humanure composting sawdust toilet for indoor and outdoor use and I 
suspect by keeping the urine out it may even be Ok for 2 or 3 days 
before it needs emptying.

Finally I gotta say that I wish I could even stand up long enough with 
my arms in the sink to do the washing up let alone climb all the way up 
there to pee, you must be very fit and agile, i wish i could do that

Luv & peas

On Friday, October 13, 2006, at 11:48 pm, 
permaculture-request at lists.ibiblio.org/rain wrote:

> 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.
>   Rain

Robyn Williamson
Permaculture Design Consultant
Urban Horticulturist
Local Seed Network Coordinator
mobile:  0409 151 435
ph/fx:  (612) 9629 3560

I think we risk becoming the best informed society that has ever died of
ignorance. *-Reuben Blades*

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