Using our own compost

Part of the idea of tidying up the compost area was to actually empty out the compost so that we could rebuild it and put it back again. While doing that it seemed to make sense to actually use anything that had composted over the last 12 months. The compost area was the first thing we did when we got the plot, we put pallets together and chucked in green waste, and we have continued to do that. Sometimes the bin would be full but leave it a couple of weeks and it would all die back down again.

We took off the top layer of non-composted material off and spaded the rest into buckets and raked over one the beds. I think we probably had around four or five bag’s worth, which is four or five bags less we will have to find elsewhere.

While the compost bin was empty, we used some of the old plastic sheeting we originally used to cover the whole plot when we first got it. We cut it to size and lined the inside of the bin. Being made out of pallets there are large gaps on the sides and it seems the way now to not have these. I always thought if you did not let the air through then it would all turn into a soggy mess. Maybe it will, but I have noticed how dried out the compost gets at times, so maybe not. Once rebuilt we put back in the non-composted bits and also a bag of chopped up cuttings from the garden.

There is still plenty of woodchip left on the site and so we used some of this to cover the ground by the compost and to make it look a bit tidier. All that is left now is to sort out the storage area next to the compost which over the years has been used more to chuck things in and forget about it.

While we were there, we took home:

  • broccoli
  • cabbage

I spotted the broccoli last week which was quite unexpected as I thought it would be a little while yet. This week it looked like it might flower any minute, and so cutting it off and eating it for seem liked like the thing to do.

The cabbages I have been keeping an eye on, the white cabbage (primo) is all on the small side but then how much cabbage do you want in one go? It looked like they were starting to get a bit crowded and so I pulled up the smallest looking one in the middle to give the others more room. We eat that, boiled for a couple of minutes and then fried with a bit of oil, cumin and chilies.

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