Thursday, July 10, 2008

Salicylate free compost?

My dietician told me that salicylate levels in mushrooms depend on where they are grown. From experience and deduction, I long ago worked out that commercial mushrooms are very bad. I've eaten, large fresh from the field mushrooms and they have been delicious and harmless.

I have on my conscience the large number of banana skins I dispose of. Our local "green waste" collection system will only collect garden waste and I don't want kitchen waste on my compost heap either. And our Prime Minister, rightly if sanctimoniously, urges us to stop wasting food.

So my plan is to get a small sealed compost bin, possibly one of the kitchen waste bins that contain organisms to digest waste, and fill it with low-salicylate waste - banana skins, bits of carrot, rotten fruit, topped up with the occasional spade full of grass from the lawn. Eventually I might even grow mushrooms in this compost.

However I fear a flaw in this plan. I have absolutely no evidence that banana skins are low in salicylate. Salicylate is normally found in outer skins, such as wood bark, and presumably the reason that bananas tend to be okay is that they are the flesh of the fruit, not the skin. How can I find out?

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