Volume 10 Part 2 Article 11: Influence of Chickenmanure in Classical Compost Based on Horsemanure and Synthetic Compost Based on Wheatstraw

Volume 10 Part 2 Article 11
Year 1979
Title: Influence of Chickenmanure in Classical Compost Based on Horsemanure and Synthetic Compost Based on Wheatstraw
Authors: A. Overstijns and L. Bockstaele


For the preparation of substrates for the classical cultivated mushroom, especially byproducts that are rich of cellulose, hemi-cellulose and lignine, are suitable. These products must be available in great quantities with a relatively constant composition. For the preparation of classical compost, the bulkproduct is mostly horsemanure. Other products as for example houserefuse, straw, hay, treebark, woodrefuse, cornstraw, aso. can also be utilized for the preparation of substrate.

The fast expansion of the mushroom culture and the necessity for the preparation of a substrate with a constant composition, on an industrial scale, stimulate the research on substitutes for horsemanure or on products that could serve as a supplement for the shortage of horse-manure. It is quite clear that small quantities of refuse products won’t be of any use. Straw is available in great quantities, it has a constant composition and as a consequence, it is especially suitable for the preparation of compost.

The nitrogen content of the bulk material (straw or horsemanure) is usually too low, so that an enrichment with nitrogen fertilizers as ureum, or ammonia sulphate is required. Organic materials give, mostly, better results as supplements, especially in compost on the base of straw, because apart from nitrogen, they also contain an important dose of easily available carbohydrates. For this purpose meal varieties with a high protein content, as soyameal, cottonseedmeal, bloodmeal aso…, were used in the past. The shortage of proteins and the large quantities that must be added to obtain a compost with an optimal carbon/nitrogen proportion of about seventeen, cause that these supplements cannot be utilized any more at the present time. Especially a synthetic compost on a base of straw would be extremely expensive. In practice, chickenmanure can very well replace the meal varieties with a high protein content and the chemical nitrogen fertilizers as an additive.

Apart from nitrogen, the chickenmanure contains the necessary quantities of phosphorus, potassium and fat, and it is also a rich source of micro-organisms. Particularly for the preparation of unconventional compost on a base of straw, chickenmanure is indispensable.

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