I thought my compost pile needed a little something ‘gourmet’ today, so I jetted down to my favorite free compost store.
Now not everyone knows that these folks consider it a part of their corporate “giving back to the community” to cheerfully hand out bags of spent grounds. If they’ve gone through the ‘training’, then they should know exactly what you’re talking about when you ask for a bag. So, don’t be shy. They’re hoping to give it all away! Check out what I got ( in addition to a venti decaf with soy):
Anyhoo, a great way for me to escape the rigors of housewifery (read: make hubby babysit for a few minutes with no guilt) is turning the compost pile. It also gets rid of the angries, gives a sense of accomplishment, and fascinates the children that I’m happily playing in trash. (BTW, a well mixed, pile at worst, smells like the forest floor at after the rain…no trash stink). OH, and it’s the cheapest, most environmentally friendly hobby out there. BEHOLD:
Here’s how anyone can have their own heaping friend:
1. Get a 3×10 roll of chicken wire and some zip ties. Unroll wire and fasten with zip ties a cylinder.
2. Fill with your plant based trash: dead plants, shredded newspaper, kitchen peelings and scraps that aren’t meat based or fatty (leftover boiled beans–yes, fat from trimming the roast–no), yard clippings and leaves, coffee grounds, tea bags, water from cooking vegetables, coffee, juice, pine needles, pretty much anything that was once a plant…plus egg shells (Why? I don’t know).
3. “Turn it” periodically. Lift the chicken wire off and put it beside the pile. Refill it. Waa-laa!
Don’t worry about it. You can’t really mess it up. It’s TRASH, for heaven’s sake. Almost all composting advice is about speeding up the process. If you do NOTHING, nature still does it’s job.
XTRA CREDIT (For Gardeners who need compost, like, NOW)
Keep the bin pretty full. The weight of the pile speeds up the process. And it decomposes, so it’s constantly shrinking. I have to ’shop’ for curb-side clippings and leaf bags in the next neighborhood over.
Also, you can chop or mow what your putting in. Smaller pieces=faster compost.
And/or, you can hit it with the hose once in a while,
And/or you can put in plenty of dry fluffy stuff (pine needles, leaves) to keep it light and aerated.
And/or turn it often. 12 turns=garden compost. That might be two weeks if you do it every day, or two years, if you do it every other month.
Some people have multiple bins to separate the already “baked” compost and fresh trash. The people I know just keep it all in one place and use a sifter to shake out the good stuff once a year at gardening time.
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