We’ll be making a hot compost pile, so please put the green stuff, including all weeds, in one stock pile,(the big messy pile in the garden).
We’ll layer the green stuff with the brown stuff, and some fresh manure, water it, trample the layers down to squeeze out air and get the manure in contact with the green material, and let it cook for a month. Then we’ll turn it and use it to make a bed. The last year’s pile has potatoes in it now.
We made the hospital garden with passive composting. This is hot composting to cook the weeds. They’re too hard to separate from the other green stuff.
Diseased plant parts can go to the bush outside the garden, or in the garbage.
Q: Won’t trampling out the air make the pile too compact?
A: No, there’s a lot of air in green plant material.
Q: Won’t the weed seeds survive and germinate?
A: If the pile gets hot enough the weed seeds will get “cooked”.
Q: Why fresh manure, why not well-rotted manure?
A: Fresh manure will compost at a high temperature, and will make the green material hot too. Usually we like well-rotted manure to top-dress a bed, and fresh manure would “burn” the plants, not good.
Q: Where will the manure come from?
A: Hopefully the horse stables by the Alpine Club, but maybe from the horse stables in Banff.
We should be building the pile in the next couple weeks, on one of the Sunday (noon to 5) or Tuesday(3-8) gardening-together sessions. Ask me anything!
Anne, for the Potato and Compost tea