A couple of years ago I knocked up some compost bins from recycled materials and although I've been chucking all my compostable material into them I've not been great with the area as a whole. Weeds (nettles) had run rampant and it hadn't been turned. I decided to get in there and sort it all out.
First job was to remove anything growing, then to get in there and turn the compost into the next bin. I was impressed with what I found. The stuff was beautiful, lovely, black and crumbly. Not quite finished though so putting it into the next bin for at least twelve months is the right thing to do.
|She's helping apparently, on "chicken Guard" to stop the hens getting in the garden.|
I then covered the full bin with black plastic, the end that was added is just a pallet screwed to the bin!
Not wanting to wait too long to use some of that goodness I burnt a couple of holes in the top and planted a few winter squash in there (Oregon homestead sweetmeats - I'm really looking forward to trying these!) I've seen squash growing on compost heaps lots of times so I thought this might be a good way to squeeze in a few extra plants.
It's still not quite frost free here (although I hope it is really) so I covered them with some make shift cloches, my wife had brought these umbrellas for a school project that didn't get used, I decided to use them in the garden straigth away, should give them a head start if nothing else.
Since taking the picture below I've already half filled this bin.
Looking at the two empty beds I decided to make a "wilting table" I got the idea from a Facebook group the other day (it was posted by Those Plant People) and straight away when I saw it I thought I could use one.
Rather than build something purpose made I found some weld mesh and some lengths of timber and laid it on top of the two empty bins.
The idea behind this is you wilt the weeds and dry out their roots before doing anything with them. I'm not sure how well this works but I'm going to give it a try. I think once they're bone dry they shouldn't come back to life in the compost but I'll do a few experiments before I start chucking it in there.
I'm planning on getting a few pallets that I've got around the place and making up another bank of compost bins at the weekend. I can certainly fill them pretty quickly and I have the sheep shed to muck out soon. Last years muck is in a pile but I don't think there is much of it left as it seems to disappear, keeping it enclosed should mean I get to use more of it where it's needed!
How much compost do you make?
How organised is your compost area?
Have you ever used a wilting table?