Posts Tagged ‘compost heap’

Slowly slowly slowly the long grass gets cut

August 17, 2012
cutting the long grass in the garden

cutting the long grass in the garden

Down on my hands and knees, slowly, slowly, slowly the long grass gets cut. Sometimes a few feet, sometimes several feet.

Today was a good day, ten feet or more, though hard work when 24C or more and rising. By mid-afternoon, 29C, maybe 30C. Luckily I was in the shade and their was a strong breeze blowing.

Usually I mix long grass cutting with other work in the garden, variety makes it less tiring, but today only long grass cutting.

Hard work. The more I cut, the more grass to then be mowed.

It takes at least two passes. Cut the long grass one day, then the next day or following days, cut what looks like a roughly mown meadow, then can be mown, though still hard work. Once mown a few times, relatively easy work with the lawn mower.

The long grass gets piled up on the compost heap. One reason for cutting a little every day, apart from hard work, is it gives the compost heap time to digest, and can be mixed with garden waste, household waste and paper.

Along the top, pieces of bramble which help to hold it together, though it seems to manage well enough without.

Blackcurrants in the garden from the brambles. Hazel nuts on the hazel bushes, though I do not think I will get to eat any as every day squirrels come along and steal them.

Sweetcorn is growing, as are tomato plants, but neither are doing very well.

There were peas and broad beans, but these got smothered by weeds. Runner beans got eaten by slugs and snails.

Patches in the grass. I keep sowing grass seed, but either poor quality grass seed or eaten by the fat pigeons, as I never see any grass appearing.

Rebuilding my compost heap

February 15, 2012
compost heap

compost heap

I raked the leaves off the grass, then decided I must rebuild my compost heap.

It was looking very sorry for itself. Low and flat and sprawling.

It is recommended that you periodically turn a compost heap. I never do. To me it seems making unnecessary work for oneself. It is true, the outside will not have fully rotted. This does not matter. When you come to open up and extract the compost, you simply add what has not fully rotted to the new compost heap.

I chopped away at the sides to make the heap of smaller diameter, forked and loosened the top, then with the addition of some household waste, piled everything back on top.

It has been subzero for two weeks or more. A few days ago the compost heap was ice solid. I expected nothing to be living inside. To my pleasant surprise loads of compost worms alive and well. I hope they did not mind too much being dumped out in the cold.

Whilst I was working, a Robin came to supervise what I was doing.

Compost heap

June 7, 2010
compost heap

compost heap

There is something deeply satisfying about a well-constructed compost heap.

Made up of garden and kitchen waste, it rots down to leave behind crumbling compost. Lift the top and it is a mass of wriggling red compost worms. Watered in hot dry weather with luke warm water keeps it working.

Also see

Seedy Sunday Brighton 2008
Sowing Seeds of Dissent
Seeds of Dissent
Do we need industrial agriculture?

Strange fungi on compost heap

April 26, 2010
Strange fungi on compost heap

compost heap fungi

Midday Sunday, a strange mould or fungi, bright yellow, almost chrome yellow, on top of a compost heap. An hour and a half later it had changed, the surface starting to brown. This was more noticeable mid-afternoon. By late afternoon, early evening, the surface was browned as though it was a loaf of bread just out of the oven. The fungi had appeared during the morning or overnight as it was not there the day before.

During the morning there had been heavy, fine rain. The previous two weeks or more, hot dry weather, though the compost heap had been watered with lukewarm water to stop it from drying out.

The compost heap consists of mainly garden weeds, autumn leaves, with vegetable scraps from the kitchen and scrunched up paper to provide fibre.

On at least one other occasion there has been a similar mould or fungi on the top of the compost heap, but not seen on any other compost heap.

What is it?

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