I think I may have been in the sun too long today as I have started imagining a type of Miss World competition; but, for compost. I mean I know I’m biased but don’t you think the compost in the photo below is good looking?
24 May. Things I have been doing today.
🗑 Emptying one of my compost bins and mulching plants. If you have a compost bin, and if not why not? Then it is time to take the last lot of compost out to make room for the summer green stuff you will be cutting down. When you take the compost out be sure to leave a 4cm layer of the old compost. This will ensure that the micro fungal elements in the old compost will help to kick start the new compost heap.
Now for those of you don’t have a compost heap the photo below shows you why you should have. This is one of over 20 barrow loads of compost that I have taken out this summer from just one bin. Each barrow load is the equivalent to an 80k bag of compost from a garden centre. But more importantly you are not just saving money, you are recycling all your garden waste and any vegetables fruits etc from the house. What you get out the other end is a nutrient rich compost full of micro organisms that are an ideal planting medium. You do of course get a few giant blood oozing maggots, but we have already discussed this.
🌯 Cutting a Californian False Pepper tree. The Californian (or sometimes Peruvian) False Pepper is a common tree here in Spain. Its drooping trailing leaves make it look like a poor man’s weeping willow. This tree can be cut back really hard in the winter when the sap has stopped rising. When I say really hard I mean really hard, you can chop off big mature branches and leave more or less a single trunk. The benefit of this approach which I favour, is that the tree very quickly starts growing again in the Spring and has a lovely weeping willow look. In a year or so large thick branches will form again and you need to start the whole process over. The only drawback of this approach is that the trunk will sprout suckers like crazy and you will need to trim these with a hedge trimmer, but it is worth it. See the photo below of the fruits of my labour. An added benefit of this tree is that it produces garlands of small red berries which are the size of pepper corns and which when dried can be used in a similar way to pepper – hence false pepper.