Approximately how much compost does a foot of wood chips compost down to?

Asked June 24, 2020, 11:55 PM EDT

I'm heavily composting my garden with arborist wood chips, and was wondering how much compost I get from a square foot of wood chips. I'm using Stropharia Rugosoannulata to break down the wood chips. Feel free to ask the mycology department for help on this question since it's a saprotroph that helps build soil due to its ability to connect to plants, and hunt nematodes.

Anoka County Minnesota

3 Responses

I do not know if the resulting compost using specific organisms would be much different than ordinary aerobic composting. I suspect not. My experience with mostly aerobic composting is that the reduction in volume is about by half. This is confirmed in these articles.

My limited experience with anaerobic composting is that the volume is reduced somewhat more, but, of course, the composting takes much longer.

In addition to the decomposing organism and the raw material, other factors that would affect the volume of the final product would include the size of the particles, the management practice (how frequently the pile is turned or watered), whether other organisms "help" your added fungi, the time the pile is managed, etc.

Most of the links are dead, and the one reference link that did work didn't mention anything about composting wood chips. Try to do some research.

I am sorry you are having trouble with the links. They work for me and I am independent of the person who answered. Wood chips are about 25% water the water will be gone after they break down. You will be left with a solid. I hope you understand you are criticizing a volunteer who gave up his free time to give you the best answer he could find. None of us are paid. Most folks understand and say “thank you.”