More Trench Composting And An Update

by Daisy


The first time I tried trench composting, I couldn’t dig down very deep because of the hugelkulture logs I buried.

All was well for a couple of days, then I woke to find the buried compost in the trench had been discovered by some critters.


They dug around and brought out some choice pieces of pineapple skin and corn cob with little bits of kernels left on them. Aside from making a small mess of the neatly raked row, it wasn’t a problem because I was waiting for it to settle a while before planting anything there.

They continued to dig around for a couple of nights after that first time, and then once all the good was gone, have left it alone since.

For my second trench composting experiment, top photo, I dug twice as deep. No logs this time, just a buried telephone cable. Luckily I knew it was there and unearthed it carefully. I don’t know how deep these cables are supposed to be, but I think this one is a little on the shallow side.


Another awesome delivery of restaurant trimmings:


Have you seen enough of my barrow of kitchen trimmings? Let me know if I’m disgusting anyone.


In went everything. I stomped it down a little and covered it back up with the soil I removed earlier.

IMG_3543It’s only been one overnight since I did this one. No critters, yet. I’ll let you know if burying it deeper was enough to keep the night raiders from finding it. Meanwhile, I’ll smooth over the first one. I still haven’t decided what to plant there, but I want to make sure when I do that the night digging has completely stopped.

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Melissa March 29, 2015 at 11:00 pm

Ahh critters such a nuisance and also an integral part of natures recycling program. I don’t know if it would help to keep them from sorting your scraps but what if you blended them in a blender. They would break down faster and pureeing everything together would mix the smells. You could get a blender at a thrift store for cheap. No need to sacrifice the good kitchen blender for composting scraps.

Shirley March 31, 2015 at 7:55 am

Would covering this with black plastic keep the critters out and speed up the composting?

Sallie March 31, 2015 at 8:18 am

Now this is really” out there”but it works. Old black and white cowboy movies. When some one died they would put them in the ground and then place rocks on the grave to keep the critters from getting the body. I have pet graves in the back yard and have put the rocks on them and the critters do not disturb them. Might not be the best for a garden.

May try less compost and more soil ratio. And maybe a few rocks thrown in for good measure. Just a thought.

Daisy March 31, 2015 at 8:32 am

Sallie–I love how you think. Ha! A lot of wisdom in old cowboy movies 😉
So far no one has disturbed the second trench (the deeper one). I planted tomatoes in it yesterday, so I hope it stays that way!

Daisy March 31, 2015 at 8:33 am

Shirley–That’s a good idea. Certainly would warm it up faster and speed things up. That in itself would discourage digging because nothing tasty would be left for the diggers.

R Riddle March 31, 2015 at 9:32 am

If you put some carbon with the veg waste might compost down quicker…just an observation

Cinnamon Vogue March 31, 2015 at 12:47 pm

Daisy spray some Ceylon Cinnamon leaf Oil diluted to 1% on the edges of the compost area. They will not cross it. You can also use orange oil, again diluted and sprayed with one of those pump sprays available from Home Depot for ten bucks.

Not sure why the telephone cable is so shallow. Maybe erosion has dropped the ground level over the years.

But no, you are not disgusting us. LOL. What a need idea to get restaurant trimmings to make compost.

Pam March 31, 2015 at 8:27 pm

I used to bury my compost in the garden too until I heard that it’s not beneficial to have stuff breaking down in the garden while trying to grow plants because the composting takes away from the veggies plants. It’s like a competition going on. So I stopped and put my compost elsewhere.

Bobbie Brown April 11, 2015 at 12:05 pm

I am very interested in this method and how long it will take those restaurant trimmings to decompose and of course how the tomatoes will do planted over them.

Daisy April 12, 2015 at 2:38 pm


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