I know that not everyone has access to farm compost or even backyard rabbit or bird compost but everyone that does has a little issue.. most of the time their compost looks nothing like what you see in the stores or the screened compost that is in the magazine or local garden group.
O no, our compost has chunks, hunks and lots of straw bits in it.. if you are lucky enough to have a tractor and a few years, you can turn it into rich black gold, but for those of us that are doing it all by hand, it took long enough to haul it, water it and give it some turns to keep it going..
I know, I know you just looked at that and thought, that is uncomposted stuff.. right..
Wrong, that is one full year of naturally composted bedding with nothing done to it, its last years feeding pack to be accurate.. its a combo of hay-straw, horse, cow and sheep with a bit of goose and the odd chicken poo and despite the look of it here, its composted down in size to a third of what it started at in just one year..
Lots of composting going on in there to reduce in size by 2-3rds, its filled with worms and all other goodness, I know this because its a chicken magnet, let them out and the hens are flocking to it to have a good scratch and find session.. This also helps greatly in regards to working the first layer lightly..
Looks a bit better dumped out right, at least now you can see its pretty light and fluffy and that the biggest pieces are about half the size of a horse apple, now you are most likely thinking, I sure would not want that anywhere near my root veggie double dug areas and I agree but this is perfect for in the garden use
Have you figure out why yet..
hmmmm. It allows the always busy gardener to both bed down and feed plants, in this case six wheel barrels where needed to bed down and fall feed the rhubarb patches, the bedding in the mix will give some added protection to the wintering plants, the compost at a year old and well after its first heat up is no longer hot to the plants but it will still be lots to do heavy feeders like rhubarb..
sure in the spring, I will rake back a touch on the main plants but not much and they would easily push threw that 2 to 3 inch deep cover. This type of compost works very well for heavy feeders, but that’s not all, it can also be placed and spread to about a two inch depth on any area that will have above ground plants for the 2015 season.