Archive for the tag “compost”

January 19 Tour

peppers blushing

peppers blushing

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cluster hues

cluster hues

grape like

grape like

roma tomatoes

roma tomatoes

romas

romas

beefsteaks

beefsteaks

san marzanos growing through the cold

san marzanos growing through the cold

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flowering mustard which I pulled out

flowering mustard which I pulled out

I've pulled out some of the flowering collards, especially the ones cabbage loopers took over.. and planted thinned out kale seedlings, after adding my home made compost as a mulch of course.

I’ve pulled out some of the flowering collards, especially the ones cabbage loopers took over.. and planted thinned out kale seedlings, after adding my home made compost as a mulch of course.

I've pulled out some of the flowering collards, especially the ones cabbage loopers took over.. and planted thinned out kale seedlings, after adding my home made compost as a mulch of course.

I’ve pulled out some of the flowering collards, especially the ones cabbage loopers took over.. and planted thinned out kale seedlings, after adding my home made compost as a mulch of course.

the cutest sun cherries

the cutest sun cherries

pak choi is flowering

purslane pettuce

purslane pettuce

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Compost Surprises

Look at what homemade compost does!
Finding these giant sprouts in my unfinished compost pile growing this large overnight is shockingly amazing! I’ve never had sprouts this large. This goes to show you how important it is to make your own compost, sprouts will never grow as fast and large as these in store bought compost.

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Take a look at the stem and leaves! These cotyledons are huge! This plant is not in its true leaf stage and it is strong.

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I found several of these sprouts in the pile, they’re probably butternut squash or maybe watermelon, it will show soon.

Jackpot!

I’ve hit composting jackpot!
Look what I found in my compost, Earthworms!

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These red wigglers create very nutrient rich compost which plants love!

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Gardeners all over the world buy these worms and their castings to use on their plants, so finding these in my compost naturally makes me a very happy gardener! 🙂

Black Gold

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My compost has finally matured and stopped cooking, I’m only a few weeks away from using it in the garden.. (my plants will love this)

Chicken wire composting

Ive recently started composting in chicken wire bins which I easily made.
The wire is sold in rolls and is very easy to work with.

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This method has proven more successful in my case, than the plastic bins. As the compost is by far hotter than before. I’ve never had actual steam blowing in my face when digging into my compost before.

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I made sure the bin is in the shade, as to not lose moisture so quickly.

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This method is cheaper to set up, and in my case cooking compost better. I can’t wait to fill the entire thing, and have my future plants happy and well fed.

Not too wet

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I’ve been juicing fruits and vegetables everyday and since then, I’ve been tossing all of the left over juice pulp in y compost

This is probably giving my compost too much nitrogen all at once, so it started getting soggy and matted, and once that happens in your compost for whatever reason, it will start to stink a little.

It’s because anaerobic bacteria; the bad guys will decompose matter where there is no oxygen and high moisture. They give off a bad smell and slimy green stuff.

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To get the good guys back in, you should introduce oxygen back to the mix. This could easily be done by either laying out the compost for a while, and mixing it back together.

Compost does happen fast in Kuwait, so do take advantage of the hot summer.

Summer Composting

It’s very hard to enjoy outdoor gardening in the summer, this is why after clearing my raised beds of sun-burned plants, I now leave the beds to bake in the heat.. I will not bother to save my plants if I will not take care of them. it’s too hot for me to do a good job.

This makes summer my composting time. I’ve been having kitchen scraps, coffee grounds, garden prunings, and grass clippings piled over the last few months, and guess what? It’s perfectly matured.

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Since I will not be doing any gardening until September, I decided to mix this mature compost into new compost ingredients to speed up their process.

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These are some dried up grass clippings from my lawn. I made sure to dry them up into a crispy brown, so they would contain more carbon than nitrogen.

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Grass clippings don’t go in alone (although they can), I toss kitchen scraps like fruits and vegetable wastes, tea bags, tissues, egg shells (which are excellent for root development) and coffee grounds.

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After mixing the ingredients and filling the bins, I add enough water to keep it moist, but not soggy.

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And that’s all it takes to make crumbly, rich compost, which my vegetables love.

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Homemade compost will not only reduce your carbon foot print, it will make your vegetables grow larger, healthier, and tastier.

You may find some bugs in your compost, and this is why no one should compost indoors, in my case I have ants, wood lice, and spiders.. It’s completely normal, and I’m especially happy to have wood lice shredding away at my compost, and helping it form. They’re really harmless.

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To have bug free compost before using it in your garden, just lay it out in the early sun, and most insects will go away from the heat, while others get picked by hungry birds.

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Get composting!

Update:

Just 2 days after mixing, look what I have..

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Look at how quickly everything is breaking down, and this isn’t even the middle of the bin, so its cooking even faster inside. With a quick and simple composting system, I got brown results in 2 days, so I must be doing something right.

Gardening Snapshots

Kale

 

basil

Cosmic purple carrotsMustard greens

 

 

making new compost

Container Garden

You can grow anything in containers, its the soil quality that will determine the strength of the plants. I found that the plants in my small containers are doing better than those in my big boxes, this is because I put my own homemade compost in them.

Beet root

Here is a closer look :

Beautiful beet root ready for harvesting

 

Mustard and Lettuce

Parsley and Mustard

 

Basil and Chard

You can mix and match your favorite leafy greens and herbs, you can forget about the spacing rules like I have here, because we have a short winter, I won’t wait for the plants to reach their full size to harvest, instead I will harvest individual leaves. This has been working really well. The plants don’t mind being crammed in a small space.

Tomato

This vigorously growing tomato plant was grown from cutting, meaning I inserted a pruned stem from another plant into the container, and watered it until it developed its own root system. Its growing exceptionally well, I didn’t even get to stake it yet, and its sprawling on the wall and on the ground.
Seeing my container plants’ progress and success in my homemade compost encourages me to make as much as I can for my future plantings.

My soil components are again 1/3 homemade compost + 1/3 peat moss + 1/3 perlite

You can place the containers anywhere that’s in full sun, and enjoy the fresh vegetables all season!

December 9 Photo Tour

Tomatoes:





Zucchini:


Leafy Greens:

Swiss Chard

Spinach

Dinosaur Kale seedlings

Beet root:


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