Increasing Soil Health Naturally

COLLECTING FREE COMPOST MATERIAL

It is October and we are expecting Winter snows to arrive and stay in the next few weeks. People are raking up the last of their yard leaves and bagging them. In our community, garbage pickup is tomorrow. So today, I drove along some of the nearby alley ways to see if I could divert some of that "garbage" into my yard. I figure if people are throwing away good energy I may as well take advantage of it. People are sometimes embarrassed to grab leaves that way. But once the bags are placed in the alley, it is perfectly legal to collect them. It only took me about 30 minutes to acquire 18 bags of leaves.

NO HEAVY BAGS

Just a quick piece of advice. To make sure you get mostly leaves, pick up the bags. If they are heavy, you know that more than leaves are probably in the bag. I do not take those bags. The only exception is if the leaves are wet. Anyway, I check the weight and then look inside the bag. I try to avoid taking bags that have quack grass and plants with a lot of seeds. You have to be careful about what you import into your yard.

MULTI-MIX COMPOST

In the meantime, we have been nurturing 2 compost piles behind the garage which we put together early in the season. I did purchase a load of hemp (non-medicinal) mulch which has been composting as well. My last blog featured the chicken composted straw and food scraps from the kitchen. In the photos above you see all those 3 piles being combined into one large pile. That pile is then added to all our growing setups, whether barrels, pots or our front yard. I also keep some of it in a separate plastic barrel to add to our indoor worm farm during the Winter months.

So now we are ready for next Spring. Soil health has been enhanced naturally. We will need only to seed and transplant seedlings to get the annual part of the system going.

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