Showing posts with the label compost bin

Compost Bin Fire - Dry Material Burned in Late Winter - February 2024

I was feeling pretty good about my prescribed burning of tiny piles of leaves and some perennial litter from last season.  I posted the details of it yesterday .  Over the weekend, I went out and did a little bit more burning.  I used my small hand rake to pull together a pile of (mostly) oak leaves - creating a little burn break from other leaf litter - and use my small propane torch to light-it-up.   But, I think I got a little too cocky.  Burning and burning and burning.  And feeling good about returning the carbon to the soil via little ash piles.  All the up the beds a bit.  I was puttering around the beds making little piles and burning them.  They light up, then expire on their own when they exhaust all the material.  A little smoldering for a minute or two, then the piles of ash go dark.  And leave behind some white, burned out material.   I found myself back by the compost bins, where I recently filled-them-up with a bunch of ornamental grass cut-downs that I

Adding Ornamental Grasses To Compost Bins - February 2024

We had "false Spring" last week when the temperatures rose to the upper 40's and low 50's, so that (naturally) lead me to getting out in the garden to do a little bit of work.   I went with the whole "leave the leaves" thing last Fall.  Well...sort-of.  I cleaned up A LOT of leaves.  But, wasn't super picky about things and left some leaves whole.  And, blew some other leaves on the lawn, chopped them up with my mulching mower, and blew those chopped-up bits back onto the beds.   I also left ALL the standing material up all Winter.  That 'standing material' includes flower stalks and ornamental grasses.  Thanks to "Fall Dividing", we have ornamental grasses all over the place.  I've read a bunch of the posts/stories about the risks of doing a Spring Cleanup in the garden too soon; leading to some problems with nesting insects.  So, I opted - for now - to mostly leave the leaf litter in place.  But, I figured I should go at those gra

Winter Kitchen Compost Snapshot - Pre-Mixing - February 2024

Two days ago, I posted a photo of a new "Desire Path" in our backyard that appeared during Winter and was a result of walking back-and-forth from our house to our compost bin with our kitchen compost material.   We kept up with composting (thus far) through the cold weather and have been stashing the kitchen scrap material in the new 3rd storage bin.  The one with the "feed me" compost bin sign on it .  I just brought out a load of material and dumped it and thought I should document the state of this bin - pre-mixing this material.  Here, below, is a photo showing the top of the bin.  The bottom 98% of this bin is filled with autumn leaves.  The top 2% that you see here is pretty colorful.  And comprised of vegetables and fruits, cut flowers, egg shells, avocado peels, onion skins, coffee grounds and some spent hydrangea blooms.   The temperatures have STOPPED any decomposition the past 30-or-so-days and kept the colors vibrant.  I've left this material on top

Compost Bin Winter Desire Path - January 2024

Before the snow totally melted this week, I noticed a phenomenon in our backyard:  I had created a ' Desire Path ' between our house and the compost bin in the back of our yard.   What are desire paths?  Check out this post from U-W Madison .  They talk about desire paths are an example of the relationship between people (me) and place (our backyard): But desire paths are not inert histories. Once established, they influence how pedestrians use and interact with their environment going forward. To the dismay of some planners and to the fascination of others, desire paths are representative of the constantly evolving relationship between people and place. Below is a photo showing our 2023-2024 Wintertime Compost Bin Desire Path: Speaks to the continued kitchen-scrap composting that we've done all Winter.  Egg Shells, coffee grounds and vegetable scraps all found their way to the bins and put in the bin with the "Feed Me" Compost Bin sign .  To date, that bin hasn&