Gardening can be a necessary obligation or the source of hours of deep satisfaction. Growing fruit and vegetables for consumption; producing plants from seeds for colour, interest and artistry; most gardeners experience the latter. As the average plant has a short life cycle, an essential part of the gardening process is clearing and disposing of garden waste and for most gardeners this is definitely obligation rather than pleasure. One way of altering this perspective is to master the skill of composting. Composting can be done in a bin or in a specially constructed heap, in the corner of the garden. It is a skill; a number of variable need to be correct. The right “ingredients” need to be added, Neither cooked proteins such as meats nor cooked carbohydrates should be added. Woody vegetation containing a large amount of lignin will take too long to decompose and for that reason should also not used.
“Browns” are the description given to vegetation in their mature state i.e. autumn leaves. Other materials termed browns are paper, cardboard, wood chipping and sawdust, teabags, eggshells when crushed. An ideal compost combination is half greens to half browns. It can take up to twelve months for adequate decomposition to take place. The results are not guaranteed perfect the first time, but with a little perseverance and practise, this part of the gardening process can be made to reap as many rich rewards as does the rest.
The following poem sums up the pro and cons and ultimate outcome of composting.
The Compost Bin.
“The art of recycling is not dead.”.
This is what the adverts said,
Inviting me to buy a bin
to put organic rubbish in.
Reducing most of carbon waste
to useful compost, though not in haste.
I purchased one, I purchased two,
eager to see what they would do.
I’d save the earth, I’d save some money
and also, which is kind of funny
I’d need to make far fewer trips,
with garden waste to the refuge tips.
In went eggshells,soft paper, greens,
but then came flies in their teens’
followed by the numerous slugs
burrowing worms, various bugs.
“Turn the pile weekly” I’d been told
When the bins to me were sold.
So I turned the rotting pile
as I proceeded with the trial.
Slowly that decaying matter
became earth which I could scatter,
Over garden areas all,
filling plant pots, large and small.
At so little cost to me,
just time and effort as you see.
Flies and smells ‘reduce’ in number
You’ll grow succulent cucumber.
This is why I urge you begin
making use of a compost bin.
Copyright(C). Denepher Smith