Monday, June 4, 2012

Ah, What The Horse Sh*t!

Turning the piles on the outside into the center. Grass & straw on the
left, horse manure & alfalfa hay on the right.
I have just returned from my Aunt's property where I turned her two compost piles into one massive one, again.  No, you read that correctly and now you are thinking, "Did you not just make her a new pile the other day?"  Yes, I did.  But now I have made it better: I have combined the two massive piles into one even more massive pile.  What is better than two piles? One massive one. LOL!

When I arrived this afternoon, the horse manure pile was steaming like an old locomotive chugging up a hill. (Little train that could, anyone?)  It was just sending pillars of steam towards the heavens.  Okay, that might be a *cough* slight exaggeration, but not by much.  As for the other pile, it was slightly warmer than ice cold.  All of the water I put on it the last time seems to have evaporated in less than three days.  Hence the reason why I decided on merging the two piles.  As the steam works its way up the pile, it will hydrate some of the dry patches.  That is not to say that I did not water it down a bit.  With my helper in tow -- *cough* my mom, that is -- I had her help by watering down each pile a bit as I turned them.  Thanks to my ingenious creek irrigation technique, it made watering them a breeze. No hauling of water to those back forty acres. (Not actually 40 acres, but you get the jist.)  Each fork-full of the composting horse manure just released more and more steam which I was absolutely giddy over.  But damn it was a bitch to turn, and will be the next time I need to turn it again.  It took longer than my own pile that I just rotated & turned yesterday.  Of course, it would be just simply by its size, however, that horse manure is so clumped together as it matted itself together while it sat. (Long story; will not get into it today.) it really made it difficult to work with.

Freshly turned & finished pile.
([L] 7 -foot   x [W] 6 -foot   x [H] 7-foot)
So I fully expect this ginormous pile to be finished composting in two weeks.  I still have a small garden to plant at my Aunt's as a special project for her.  So I need to get that underway, otherwise we will miss the plant's harvesting timetable that we are aiming for.  You could say I have a busy summer lined up this year. I was thinking of asking my Aunt about another special project I had in mind, but I think I will wait on that.  I do not need/want her thinking I am trying to steal her land since that is not what I am trying to do.  I had wanted to try and improve her "park-like" area so it is not so water logged and such. The ground has a ton of clay in it, which not only makes it hard for plants & trees to live there because of a lack of nutrients, but it sucks for water drainage. 

No comments:

Post a Comment