With the increase in operating costs and raw materials, local nurseries are now reclaiming potting soil from waste material such as dead plants and unsold products. Operators can stock pile material for a season before bringing in a portable trommel on site. Trommels are basically a screen formed into a horizontal tube that rotates bouncing the waste material inside. This lifting and dropping action will seperate the soil from the root mass allowing the screen opening to produce a finish product. The oversize material and other waste products such as plastic tags and potting containers will be discharged out the end of the Trommel. Some Trommels have a optional hammermill that can increase throughput production by 20%.
Trommels usually come in 2 sizes and operate under the 50hp air pollution permit limit for most states. A smaller 15 yard per hour Trommel is ideal to be fed by a skid steer, and the mid range 60 yard per hour Trommel to be fed by a 3-5 yard bucket loader. Grizzly bars are
common over the feed hopper to reduce the amount of oversized material being fed into the hopper.
Trommels can also be used to process compost piles into finished products. The oversized green waste can be easily re-stacked into new compost piles for future processing.