I’m always amazed when we get drop off on days like today. Today was a rainy, dark and gloomy kind of morning in St. Roch during the block of time we offer composting services. I was able to set up the compost before it really started coming down, but we had to time it as to when to pick up and put away all of our bins and avoid the rain. From 10:00-1:00 (our drop off window) it steadily rained and yet, we still got some visitors! Not two full bins, but at least 3 different households contributed this week and diverted that much from our landfills. Well done!
The second compost pile is shaping up to be really great at composting, despite its hodgepodge set up (the only thing not recycled to build it was screws, so I’m not complaining). This week I used dried out corn husk to serve as our carbon (along with cardboard), so I’ll be sure to check it out tomorrow. If I have flies, the experiment didn’t work, but we’re all out of leaves and I had the corn drying out, so I’m thinking it will be a good enough substitute. I’ll keep you posted on the results.
It’s fun to experiment with a hot compost pile. In theory, everything is compostable, if the pile is consistently hot enough. In my Master Gardener class there was a story about someone composting a goat… while I’m not planning on trying that anytime soon, I still can’t get that story out of the forefront of my head as my mind has been blown ever since hearing it. Plus, tearing apart the cardboard is hard work on tired hands, so experimenting with different types of readily available carbon sources is of new interest to me. Hopefully the corn husks can serve as a carbon source. If not, just like the goat, everything will eventually turn into compost.
There have been a great deal of challenges in the garden as of late. Specifically are very hot summer days make it challenging to work during my daughters naptime (which is when I usually get the bulk of tasks completed). In between heat warnings and rain, my window to work in the garden has diminished, and the list of tasks yet to be completed seems to grow exponentially. The grass (which is mostly a mix of Bermuda and Goose grass) is loving life. While we’ve been on top of mowing (which has required much higher frequency) dealing with weeding flower beds and the high grass in places that can’t be mowed is still leaving much to be desired. There is always room to grow when you’re working in a garden, and this is one areas I know I am in need of improvement.
The bugs are also an issue. I am still maintaining a completely organic garden, so I have not used pesticides or herbicides to tackle these challenges and the two are related. If I could just manage the grass and the weeds it would go far in managing pests. I may need to buy a battery operated weed eater to solve it. I will need to spend some money on fertilizer, so, if so, something must be done.
While we’re working hard to experiment with growing vegetables, continuing to offer compost services to the public, and maintaining the lot, predictably there will be challenges. There are also successes. Check out these beautiful sunflowers we grew from seed! They’re giving the pollinators stuff to do while showing off and adding beauty to the block.
And we’re making compost. Really rich compost. It kinda amazing. Nutrient rich community grown compost, produced in the middle of the city. it’s nice to feel like we’re doing stuff, and it’s wonderful having the space to try.
We’re excited to share with more with you about the upcoming happenings at the garden, but right now it’s hush hush until further notice. It’s going to be amazing and I am certain you’re going to dig it, I am in bliss about all of it, stay tuned!
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