Wednesday, June 27, 2012

a few words about compost..pile or no pile

Lately I've been hearing a lot of people talking about their compost piles. I USED TO use a compost pile, even bought a tumbler at one time, but then I learned how impractical compost piles are.

When you build a compost pile, all of your compostables are piled to mature in a place OFF OF the garden proper. Some people will pile these compostables for a year or more to make their black gold. One problem that they aren't seeing by doing this is that all of the leachables go through the compost pile and into the soil below it, which does build very nutritious soil UNDER the compost pile, but is doing no good for their gardens. By the time you get your black gold on your garden you have lost valuable nutrients to the soil below your compost pile. Ever notice how the potatoes and squash that grow out of your compost pile are the best on the property?

So instead of buildling a compost pile, why not just put your compostables right on your garden soil? You can just spread them on the top of the soil, or to be neater and cleaner, tuck them under some mulch or weeds, or you can even bury them if you  so choose, but at least you aren't just fertilizing a 4 x 4 area under your compost pile, but you are fertilizinig your garden.

The reason I bought the compost tumbler several years ago, was cause I was too lazy to shovel a path to the garden in the winter..and would end up tossing a lot of scraps right out onto the garden on top of the snow (very messy looking) so I  bought the tumbler to use close to the house in the winter (not good, it really worked poorly so I sold it).

I also began to realize the best soil on my property was within 40 of the house back door, where a lot of stuff was getting thrown out on top of the soil and even on top of the snow.

That soil was rich, black, full of worms and the plants grew 4 to 5 times larger, faster and healthier than the plants anywhere else on the property. The worms were huge and anything that landed on the ground would quickly be pulled below the surface by the worms.

Even when I pull weeds and leave them as mulch on the garden, the worms will make fairly quick work of them, using them up so fast I can barely maintain a mulch on the give it a try..give up that compost pile and put the compostables right on your garden.

1 comment:

  1. We did some experimenting with this method this summer (our first as permies) and I much prefer it over the composter we have been using. I will continue to use the composter in the winter but stop doubting the easier method the rest of the year ;)