Friday, August 1, 2008

No Piles Here!

Or at least, not often. Rhonda Jean at Down To Earth has posted some very useful information about how to make compost. Now that I have chooks as well as guinea pigs, I don't tend to build compost heaps. Why is this?

Firstly, our lawn clippings are left to dry and used as bedding for our guinea pigs. The guinea pigs will eat some weeds adn grasses, so they are fed them directly. Used piggie bedding goes into the chook dome (or run); it may still contain things that the chooks will eat, like stray seeds. Other green waste, like radish tops and weeds the piggies won't eat, are thrown straight in to the chooks as well. The chooks eat some material, then scratch all the stuff around and poo on it, turning it into compost in situ. When I move the chook dome on, I can plant straight in to a luscious composty mixture, and I don't need to shovel anything anywhere.

Not only do I avoid moving manure about, I don't dig my garden beds very often either. I have had problems with my back this year, following a car accident, and this method has proved a blessing to me. It would suit anyone whose back really isn't up to heavy garden work.

It is true that you can never have too much compost. I keep most organic material on my property, apart from the usual things like rose prunings and noxious weeds. If the piggies don't eat something, the chooks probably will. We have a large lawn area with plenty of kikuyu, which needs frequent cutting in warm weather... yet I still never seem to have enough compost. Ah, compost, a gardener's brown gold!

No comments: