We created a lovely, large, compost heap on Sunday, thanks to around 20 compost builders, and sustained by soup, cake and Julia’s fried green tomato tasters – yum, and just the solution for our glut of green tomatoes after last week’s frosts..
Thanks to Ernst and Rosie from Australia Biodynamics Victoria for again making the long trek from Toolangi to help us out and enthusiastically taking part in the day, as well as the many compost ingredient collectors and unloaders, caterers, and workshop participants. As a result, we have a wonderfully diverse array of materials to keep the microbes happy for the next 4-6 months. Now we wait and let the organisms and microbes do all the work!
If you are walking past the garden in the next few weeks, stick your hand under the heap’s covering straw blanket and feel the warmth – on cold mornings and evenings you may see steam rising as the internal temperature heats up to around 60-70 degrees C. During the next 6-8 weeks the thermophillic bacteria will be hard at it, decomposing and transforming the carbon and nitrogen rich materials, before the heap cools down and the actinomycetes and fungi take over, and then later the earthworms and other soil fauna.
Photographs from the day from Gen, Ernst and Julia are coming, but in the meantime if compost making doesn’t inspire you to get active in the garden in May, perhaps these planting notes might, with tips for what to sow and plant, when, and a reminder that if you haven’t put out your first BD500 (horn manure) spray for the season, this month is the time to do it – see the notes for auspicious application dates.
Looking ahead to June, Anthony will hold a biochar workshop, more news about that soon…