The outer skin is called exocarp. It is waxy and difficult to decompose. On the other hand, the middle part of the husk, the mesocarp (coir), is softer and watery—this is the part that can decompose faster, given the right mix. We use only the mesocarp in making our coco bedding.
To accelerate its use as fertilizer base, we need a catalyst. In this case, it is fungi that will hasten the husk’s decomposition. If you go to a logged forest, you will find fungi sticking out of dead and decomposing logs. This is called Saprophytic fungi –a harmless fungi that grows only on dead cells.
Because of the spread of the saprophytic fungi in the manure pile, the whole thing will decompose twice as fast as without it [There are no dead cells in a growing plant. Therefore the saprophytic fungi cannot grow. Hence it takes a long time to decompose. For this application, slow decomposition is very much preferred because it increases the longevity of the growing medium.]
Saprophytes are great buddies when your horse’s urine and manure are mixed with the coir. If you try to compost our coco-bedding in your back yard, you will notice little mushrooms sprouting on the pile. It is a good thing. Just leave the pile alone. The pile is undergoing a heat treatment, and in about 60 to 90 days it will be fully decomposed.
When done, you will have a top-of-the-line organic fertilizer which can improve the N-P-K- of the soil. This super rich product can now be commercially sold at a premium price to your local gardens. Let's talk about the return on your investment!
Horse manure contains about 50% organic carbon and about 5% nitrogen. The Carbon [C] to Nitrogen [N] ratio (C/N) is the deciding factor that determines the decomposition rate of a manure pile. Any material which has more carbon than nitrogen is generally referred as "browns." The reverse is called "greens.".
We have been able to find just one paper published in 2013. This study was done on the effects of composting coconut coir with poultry manure. The results revealed that the composting process using poultry manure brought a bio-conversion of coir pith to a final product in 45 days. This product possessed physio-chemical characteristics required for a quality organic manure. C/N ratio, which is considered as a maturity index of composting process, reduced during the composting process, to 21.42.
We have studied the effect of composting coconut coir with horse manure. We are conducting further studies and will share the details at a later date.