Autumn composting

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Today we did some compost amendment while cleaning up the yard.  We raked up all the leaves in the back yard and piled them on the blue tarp you see on the wheelbarrow at right.  Then we threw the leaves in the bin you see that is made out of pallets.  This is a significant renewable carbon source that is produced on site. Now we can throw in all kinds of other materials, hopefully mostly wet and green, that will combine with the leaves, break down, and produce compost.  We have a delayed reaction in composting at Sol Feliz and will not open this bin for about 2 more years.  Instead of continually stirring our compost and having it ready sooner, we prefer to just let time run its course and make use of the compost years down the road.

We do have a couple other composting systems where we incorporate leaves, weeds, and manure with moisture and periodic turning to have compost sooner.  We also have a vermi-compost system that uses red wiggler earth worms.  Our next step will be to have a compost tea operation.  We feel that one of the most important things we can do to insure yields in the face of drought is optimize our soil quality, soil quality that comes from our composting operations…

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About Miguel

Miguel Santistevan is a researcher, educator, and advocate for traditional agriculture crops and systems.
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