MY COMPOST HEAP SYSTEM ROCKS!
There comes a time when you have to get down and dirty and back to basics. I mean getting to grips with the soil and its need for nutrients. This reality hit home after a second year of poor sweetcorn yields and I just knew that the only soil-u-tion was digging in compost or muck. This has caused many a dilemma. For years, because of the bad access at the plot , I’ve used chicken manure pellets tossed about the place randomly. So its time to get serious and crazily enough I have a compost heap already that was full but I couldn’t get in it to dig it out.
A single compost heap will not do either as digging out the lovely stuff underneath meant climbing in and removing the top rotting layer. So I hadn’t basically.
I spied a few pallets at the back of where I worked and so armed with a tape measure was able to pick out three matching palettes. I don’t need massive pallets either as I well never fill them in one season.
I only needed three so that I’d have brilliant access.
I placed the new pallets at right angles to the old compost area so that any inter-shoveling between compost areas would be easy. I simply tied them together with a corner stake that I hammered into place.
My original enclosure was modified by sawing the top three rungs so that I could get a shovel in easily. I sorted through what was there and am pleased that loads of lovely crumbly black gold is now ready to use.
Now that I am sorted with the hardware the system is obvious. New vegetation, kitchen scraps and non-weed matter goes in the new compost enclosure while I dig out the old and use its bounty.
- Dog and Cat Poo. But horse, cow, chicken and rabbit droppings are great.
- Tea and Coffee Bags. Rip open the bags and empty out the grains and discard the bags.
- Citrus Peels and banana skins.
- Onions and potatoes if left whole. This is because they might continue to grow so squash them up.
- Fish and meat scraps.
- Glossy or coated paper.
- Sticky Labels on Fruits and Vegetables.
- Coal fire ash.
- Sawdust from treated wood.
- Perennial weed seed heads or roots. I don’t want to risk that pesky bindweed any opportunity to multiply.
A compost recipe
- Combine green and brown materials (no poo). Brown being garden soil that will contain microbes and good bacteria and even lovely worms
- Sprinkle water over the pile regularly so it has the consistency of a damp sponge.
- Stir it up as that will get everything in contact with all the good bacteria
- When is looks like its rotted down use it! Don’t worry if there are bits of twig etc as you can always sieve that out.