Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Welcome to our home makeover: Outdoor Projects: Our Compost Bin & Our Fairy Garden

Project 1: Compost Bin

Ava and I love to garden and I wanted rich soil. My neighbor built us this compost bin. I have to be honest composting is still new to me. I am learning as I go but wanted to share the bin with you and some composting tips. I toss in my yard clippings (it is full right now!) and kitchen leftovers all veggies and fruit. The gaps between the wood slats let air circulate around the pile to keep odors at bay and ensure that wastes are breaking down; the front has a doors which makes it easy to turn the pile and remove compost when it’s ready to spread. 

There are many options for composting bins and you can even purchase one ready made for you if you do not want to build it yourself. 

This Old House has great instructions on a Compost Bin DIY or search the web for easier or cheaper options.

Tips for successful composting:
  1. Gather grass clippings and green yard waste but be sure to mix with the "brown" materials like leaves and shredded paper to add carbon. You will need both, but if you only add grass clippings your pile will compact and start to stink.
  2. Moisten dry materials as they are added.
  3. Do not compost meats or pet waste. Stick with food scraps and yard waste only.
  4. Avoid all pesticides and/or herbicide treated material.
  5. Turn your pile as much as you can. Each time you turn it will speed up the process.
  6. Add compost to your garden a few weeks before you plant. Let the compost have a chance to work into the soil. Try to mix it in and let it sit before you plant.
  7. Bugs, worms and most bugs are ok in your compost.
  8. Optional is to cover the top of compost with a tarp to keep it moist. When the material at the bottom is dark and rich in color, your compost is ready to use. This usually takes anywhere between two months to two years.
I have not used my compost yet but plan to come spring. Happy Composting! 

Project 2: Fairy Garden

Welcome to our humble Fairy Garden project. 
This project was inspired by a fairy garden door we saw on a hiking trip. 
In the middle of the forest we saw a tree with a little fairy door. 
Ava wanted to have her own fairy garden one day so for her 5th birthday we started one in our backyard.

It is very small and humble and we like it that way for now. 
We planted a few ferns and added some positive message stones. 
We will continue to add to our garden each season.

Our garden gnome traveled with us from our aunt's house in Brooklyn. 
He guards over the fairies. 

P.S. Don't forget...

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