Final report on the evaluation of three manure composting methods for nitrogen conservation, environmental impact, crop growth response and operating and maintenance costs
This study was initiated to provide needed information on the nitrogen retention, environmental soundness, crop growth response and economics of solid manure composting. The objectives of the study were to: 1) Compare the relative nitrogen conservation potential during the composting process for three composting technologies suitable for farm application. The technologies to be compared include: static pile passive aeration, mixed forced aeration, and turned windrow. 2) Determine the nitrogen and phosphorous leaching potential of each of the finished composts generated by the three composting technologies listed in Objective 1. 3) Compare the crop response to each of the composts generated by the three technologies listed in Objective 1, to raw manure and commercial fertilizer at relative nutrient application levels. 4) Compare the relative economics of the three composting technologies listed in Objective 1. 5) Examine the effect of fall/winter versus spring/summer application of the three composts on crop growth response.