The Benefits of Compost
Healthy soil is the key to successful vegetable gardening. One technique for sustaining a healthy soil food web is to regularly add compost.
Compost can be worked into the soil at planting time or routinely layered onto the soil surface for those who prefer a no-till approach.
Feeding the soil instead of your plants improves:
- soil texture and structure
- water retention (less watering!)
- soil temperatures (warmer in winter, cooler in summer)
- pH balance
- plant resistance to disease and insect invasions
Compost is the perfect soil amendment & we make it right here at our garden.
The bins located at the south side of the garden use a slow, low labour process. In this system, materials are continually added but rarely turned. Signs attached to these bins explain which bins accept new materials and which hold completed compost you can use.
The bins located toward the north side use a faster process known as the Berkeley Method developed by the late Professor Robert D. Rabbe. This method requires a lot more work but can provide regular batches of completed compost. The smallest bin is used to collect green materials; the other two are used to turn the pile.
For details on what materials can be donated and how you can help click here.
Compost tea can be a valuable source of micro-nutrients and is used either as a soil drench or a foliar feed. Mark’s recipe can be found here. All the equipment you need is housed in the shed (with the exception of the “D” batteries.)