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Saving For The Future

2/21/2014 1:21:00 PM

Tags: Field Compost Pile, Chipper Shredder, Woodpile, Depression Era, Mary Conley

Mary ConleyDear reader,

In my last blog I told of how harvesting our own fence posts from our little forest was such a gratifying accomplishment. Some things just make you feel good, don’t they? Today I have something else to tell you about that makes me feel that way. If you aren’t doing it already, maybe you’ll want to give it a try.

Our farm was new to us, so actually, almost everything we did was for the first time, interesting, and even exciting. I imagine we did some things wrong, though, and perhaps our neighbors had a good laugh now and then.

We had been cleaning up piles of downed trees and brush in our lower field to make it easier to mow. Larry was having a great time with his chainsaw and newly acquired tractor. You know men and their toys! Anyway, this particular tree had been dead for some time and much of the wood was rotten and full of insects. We hauled the good wood to our growing woodpile, but not knowing what else to do, we dumped the rest into the burn pile.

When Todd heard what we were doing, he suggested that we start a field compost pile instead of burning the unusable wood. We had been composting our kitchen scraps and garden waste for a couple years, but this had not occurred to us. What a shame. The men found a perfect place under some trees and close to the creek, and we have been using it ever since. Someday, someone is going to have a rich source of decomposed material to use on their fields and gardens. It won’t be us, but it still makes me happy to think about it.

field

The Field Compost

The brown area in the picture is where we started our field compost pile. Anything that doesn’t go through the chipper shredder or onto the woodpile goes here, and it has grown immensely since we started it in 2010. We try not to waste anything, and in doing so, we’ve become like our depression era parents. That’s a good thing!



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NebraskaDave
2/27/2014 2:51:22 PM
Mary, you ever heard of a German way of growing call Hugelkultur? It's a way of making a raised bed by burying wood. It's supposed to provide nutrients for years to what ever is grown above the decomposing wood. Moisture is supposedly retained in the underground wood so less water for growing plants is needed. Just google hugelkultur and lots of information will pop up. ***** Have a great wood pile day.



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