Thursday, October 8, 2009

Why I'm in love with my compost heap.

It's fall here in Austin and the temps are cooling down a bit. Not in my compost heap, though! Temps in there are climbing with all this good moisture and the addition of chicken manure, so the pile is really breaking down and finally truly "composting."

I love my compost heap. It started out as that inevitable "Pile Of Leaves" in the backyard that began composting itself 2 springs ago much to my joy and surprise. A huge pile of leaves condensed down to a rich, smaller pile of organic matter? Awesome. And with no help from me!
But eventually i decided I'd step in, lend a hand, and make my compost heap "legit."
After several incarnations of heapdom, the compost has finally found it's personality.
Surrounded on three sides: one side fence, two sides hay bales. It's insulated by the hay, but aerated by the porous fence and my weekly stabbings and turnings with my pitchfork. I add any kitchen scraps the chickens cannot eat, the chickens' dirty bedding, and weeds, leaves and grass from the yards and gardens.
The chickens love the compost heap too: it's a great source of bugs, from roaches to pillbugs, and they just love playing Queen of the mountain.

So, here's to you, heap of compost! You're a source of joy and pride to myself, a place of entertainment and snacks for my girls, and a luscious source of organic matter for my grateful gardens.

Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Dead veggies and weeds, to fertilized veggies and seeds.

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