I have a confession to make but please don’t tell anybody because I’m supposed to be one of those über-organic types who saves everything and crafts sweaters out of cat fur. I think, however, if I share this with my blog buddies I’ll probably feel a whole lot better. So here goes–
I hate composting.
There! I said it! Wow, I feel so much better already!!!*
All right, all right, let me step that back slightly: I don’t hate hate composting, I just suck at it. And not *all* composting, just the fancy-schmancy kind that demands combinations of food scraps in complicated proportions and thermometers and spinners and the hauling of wet stuff to and fro.
Oh, *that* kind of composting!
Right. You probably hate it, too. Or maybe you’re intimidated. I mean, I certainly was/still am. In fact, we currently own a lovely Canadian rotating composter whose main job is to sit in my yard and look pretty. We give it a whirl every once in a while but I’ve never been able to master the decay rates so that I have finished compost exactly when I need it. Because, boy, with a large yard and so much hungry soil to feed, I need lots and lots of rich organic matter to keep my homestead happy.
I love compost!!!
Ah ha! Voilà la diff! I love compost and other green manure (not to mention the ducks’ generous contribution!) since I love what it does for the soil but I’m not too keen on the conventional process of making it. So, today, on Blogger Action Day: Save the Soils, let me share my lazy gal’s tips for soil improvement:
1) Leaves Are A Gardener’s Best Friend: Don’t throw your autumn leaves away–rake that free fertilizer into your ornamental beds! Protect the soil during harsh winter weather and let the leaves feed it as they break down.
2) Grass Clippings are Green Manure: Don’t cut your lawn too short, water deeply but less often and when you do cut the grass, leave the clippings on top–a quick and free vitamin shot for the ground and the ground cover.
3) Grow Clover: A very easy, inexpensive way to enrich the quality of your soil and attract pollinators. An excellent cover crop, clover comes in varieties that do well even in poor soil.
4) Cut Back on Lawn: Do you really need that much grass? If you’re not using it, reduce that expensive, hard-to-maintain, low-quality moat and convert some of it to hardy perennials–either ornamentals or edibles. Or create a rain garden. Or plant low-water natives. The microbes will thank you by supporting both food and flowers!
5) Get a Duck: There’s nothing that improves soil faster than poultry. Or maybe I’m a tad biased. 😉 ***
But don’t just take my word for it! Check out all the other bloggers celebrating International Year of Soils. And stay tuned for more tips all year long!
*Except that I just confessed this to the whole Internet.
**And the wild bees will thank you by pollinating your tomatoes. Win, buzz, win!
***In all honesty, poultry are *not* as easy as planting clover.
Copyright 2015, Lori Fontanes
Oh my friend. Just a heads up, if you need more shall we say fertilizer… Snorts… I know where you can get some 🙂 XOXO – Your Humble Servant 🙂 ❤
Laughed WAY Out Loud–thanks, I’ll keep that in mind, Mr. Bacon. 🙂
Saving leaves is my favorite gardening thing. Raking them into the beds is so much better than trying to move them to some far off spot. As always, I enjoyed your post! just keep the ducks away from the snap peas if you want any for yourself!
They also love baby pumpkin plants, baby corn plants, baby carrot…u get the idea!!! 🙂
Haha–but they’re so cute! Sophie the duck is on the mend. She can stand up now and put some weight on her bad leg. Ferd has been her knight.
The knight in shining feathers! I love it!!! Thx for sharing the good news about your waterbabies!!! 🙂
As some one who used to attempt to compost, I know that it isn’t easy to get it perfect as some people will tell you. I ended up throwing everything into a pile and leaving it for several years. Crude, but effective. 😉 You’ve offered some very good suggestions for improving the soil, if I didn’t live in an apartment, I’d be trying them, even the addition of a duck or two.
I’m all about easy & effective! 😉 Thx for the kind words of support on Save the Soils Day!!!
lol….awww..Lori, I have to reblog this for no one makes composting an interesting subject, but you! Your confessions of “hating” compost. I have to admit there are chores with this organic gardening that just do not appeal to me:-) but the results are amazing-sooooo..like any job-we do the “not so fun” stuff is part of work!
I confess, this organic growing is hard work..not as easy as people make it out to be + not a hobby you can put on a shelf for a few days-it requires attention + so worth it!
Happy Save The Soil!!!!
Thanks, blog buddy!!! Try not to think of it as hard work so much as–ok, it’s hard work! But it’s fun, rewarding and you get something delicious out of it! Try *that* with a treadmill. 😉 Happy Save the Soil Day back atcha!!! 😀
PS, I will be posting again later today with a bunch of other bloggers’ links. Stay tuned–same bat channel…
What I have said for years, Robbie, is this: “Every baby has its diapers!” If you love the main thing, you will do what it takes to have it. Marriage, babies, gardens, animals, plants, whatever it is . . . in my not-so-humble-opinion, anyway. ~ Linne
And thanks, Robbie, for the introduction to another great blog. and Hi, Lori! ~ L
Hi Linne! Thanks for the comment and welcome aboard!!! 😀
Reblogged this on Palm Rae Urban Potager and commented:
Happy Save the Soil Day
Thank you Lori for starting this cause + I hope we do it again next year—-If you don’t know Lori-you need to for she makes me “laugh” in photos and words!
Thanks for the shout-out, Robbie!!! I think you get the new, improved title award: Save the Soil Day, love it! Let’s do it!!! 😀
lol…took me a minute to catch on! I am moving slow today:-)
I’m with ya, there!
Our volunteer composter does a much better job than I used to. I only have to provide the scraps 🙂
Do you mean a person who volunteers or just an ad-hoc collection of kitchen scraps? Either way can work, me thinks. 🙂
Yes, a person who volunteers :p
You bet-same day next year! Just don’t forget to remind me a month before! I am so easily distracted:-)
Lori-Check out Fran’s post-she put one up before it was January 22-LOL
She lives in Tasmania-you might want to go over and say hi:-) Another good soul to help the soil! She lives on 4 acres in a beautiful place:-)
haha..souls helping soil—lol…too funny, caught myself! You are rubbing off on me!
I would love to visit Tasmania!!! I’ve been to Kangaroo Island but not quite to the home of the Tasmanian Devil (guessing they’re not like the cartoon version, mind!)
As you know, Lori, most of Canada does not allow herbicides, and so our lawn has quietly been taken over by clover in large parts.
Another good benefit in addition to those you mentioned: the wild rabbits so love the clover that they forget to eat our veggies and flowers! Who knew?
Ah, ye ol’ distraction ploy! Works like a charm! 😉
Keep up the advocacy–great post.
Thanks!!! Will do what I can! 🙂
Great tips! Shrubs and perennials make life easier…
And poultry make wonderful pets 🙂
Thanks!!! And the ducks say hi, too! 🙂
Loved this! I can totally relate to your compost-a-phobia. Doing composting the right way just seems like so much work, so here on our farm we use a combination of lazier methods. With horse manure and sheep/poultry litter, we just pile it and leave it until it breaks down (takes longer, but seems to work). We also have a couple of small rolling plastic compost bins and a worm bin, and we deposit leaves into our veggie garden as weed-stifling mulch, letting them nurture our plants as they break down.
So glad u shared this–happy not to be the only one looking for the easier way to get the job done! 🙂 I believe economists call this “efficiency”, right? 😉