Ask a Gardening Question

QUESTION: Compost & Ammonia

comments (4) August 23rd, 2009

Pin It

GmaSandi GmaSandi, member
thumbs up 5 users recommend

Can you speed the composting process by adding ammonia to the pile?Photo by JoePhoto under the Creative Commons license 2.0.Click To Enlarge

Can you speed the composting process by adding ammonia to the pile?

Photo by JoePhoto under the Creative Commons license 2.0.


Someone told my husband that pouring ammonia in our new compost pile will accelerate the decomposition process, as that's a byproduct of the process anyway. Is this true? I sure want to know before he pours it in! Thanks.


After you try it, show it off to other members in the
gardener's gallery.
Post your photos

posted in: compost, , Ammonia

Comments (4)

Millie_Barnes writes: You don't have to be desperate to use urine as a compost activator or as fertilizer. It is sterile and when diluted 1 part to 10 with water is an amazing fertilizer. I use every bit from my household for my veggies, very high yield and no fertilizer to buy. I also use a sawdust toilet so that I can do high heat composting and between me and my Holland Lop bunny and worm farming, I have not bought any type of fertilizer in 5 years.
Posted: 7:41 am on February 12th
GmaSandi writes: Thank you Chris! I think I'll go with the "animal by-product" and save the ammonia for cleaning windows. Ever hopeful, husband said possibly it could be used in a modest portion mixed with water. But for now, just water and our central valley heat is doing it's magic and my barrel of compost-to-be is breaking down and getting darker all the time! I'll try to get some photos online.
Posted: 12:42 am on September 3rd
ChrisMcLaughlin writes: (Meant to type "C:N ratio") *grin*
Posted: 8:10 pm on August 27th
ChrisMcLaughlin writes: Pouring straight ammonia onto a pile can produce an excess of nitrogen in there which could off-set the C:N ration - and create a less-then-pleasant smell to boot. Your husband is on the right track, however, if he's looking for a nitrogen source. But it's more beneficial to just add manures from herbivorous animals (rabbits, chickens, horses, sheep, etc) or other nitrogen rich sources such as grass clipping.

That said, I have heard of someone using human urine as a nitrogen source when they were desperate, LOL!
Posted: 8:09 pm on August 27th
You must be logged in to post comments. Log in.