HELP HELP HELP!!!
A few days ago I decided to turn the compost pile. It is moving along very nicely considering it is winter. I saw some of my beloved worms and some great soil at the bottom of the pile. I also saw 2 mice that had made their home in my soon-to-be black gold. I jumped as I do every time I see a mouse, envisioning them scurrying up my leg. I was disgusted, thinking of those gross rodents living in my pristine pile.
What to do:
1) Nothing, they don’t hurt a thing.
2) Get the out of the compost.
My questions about them being there:
1) Will they eat my worms?
2) Is their urine/feces harming my pile/worms?
I think I will find a way to get them OUT of my pile. But before I do that, I really want to hear from you about what you think I should do and what kind of damage they might cause.
Since the gardening season is over in Central Oregon there is not much going on at my house. The garden is tilled and awaiting the spring. The worms are happy and quickly turning their bin. I have been sewing a lot more lately. It is more like teaching myself to sew with the expertise of some sewing friends. My latest project is going to be a quilt. I will show you it in a couple of years when it is done, LOL. I am still composting. Soon I think I will tarp the compost to help keep it a little warmer during the winter. I don’t know for sure that this works, but I feel like I am doing something productive. I plan on getting some fresh apples and canning them soon.
…and the chickens…
I was told that if you want your chickens to keep laying during the winter you have to put a heat lamp in with them. I kept it in mind but only got it in there about 2 1/2 weeks ago. Through the summer we were getting 3 eggs a day from our 3 lovely ladies. I noticed that before we got the light in there we were only getting maybe 1 egg on a good day. So in went the lamp. It took about a week, but we are up to 2-3 eggs a day.
So… I guess it has been proven. My girls are laying well again and we will be leaving the lamp in until the nights warm up again. Today, that seems like a LONG time.
This is the time of year that we shop more than normal. Lets be sure we are doing our part by taking those reusable bags into the store with us. Sometimes they are easy to forget, but lets try real hard to not contribute to more plastic bags.
I have entered my baked goods in the fair and am awaiting the judging outcome. My son, Cameron also entered a couple of things this year as well.
Nothing much is going on in the garden, just sucking up tons of water because of the heat. They love the heat though. I am getting pumpkins galore, gourds too. Lots of green tomatoes, none red yet. The corn is huge and is producing well so far. Not ready to pick though.
The chickens have started laying. Little baby eggs. There are really cute. My little girls are becoming hens.
Crystal, Omerosa, and Trixy
The clothes don’t take long to dry on the clothesline because it is so hot. I do love the clothesline.
My compost would be complete if I would leave it alone and quit adding to it. I have a couple of pumpkins I allowed to stay growing in it. I have finally been able to construct a second story home for the worms. If I could only get them to move out of the first story just a bit quicker, that would be great. They are movin’ on up SLOWLY. Mostly the baby worms for now.
I hope that you were able to watch Oprah today (4-22-09). I know, I know, normal people work and have lives. I never have time for t.v. during the day anymore, but today was Earth Day. I took part in my 2nd annual Oprah Earth Day program. Last year was good, Julia Roberts was on and they showed how vermicomposting works. This year was exceptional, if you did not see it you need to go on line and watch it. You will not be disappointed. I promise. I felt myself wanting to cry through most it. I am hoping that was a normal reaction, I think so???? Anyhoo I never push things unless I mean it, and I mean it, check it out!
On another note of being the proud parent that I am… My son came home from school today asking if he and his friends could go up and down the street picking up trash. I am so tickled with his compassion!
My neighbor Kendra had some great questions that I thought I would attempt to answer. I am choosing to answer them in a post because I thought that they might be able to help others as well.
Where to get manure to blend in with the garden
I frequently see manure being advertised on Craigs List. Typically it is free, sometimes they will offer to deliver for a small fee. I would recommend looking for “aged” manure. Don’t worry if it is mixed with shavings and straw, the more the merrier, it is all great for the garden. Regular or fresh manure is “hot” and could burn your plants.
Kendra had concerns with having time to start and maintain a vegetable garden
I would suggest starting small. Even a patio garden is better than no garden. If you don’t have time to prepare a garden maybe you could start this year with pots. I have a garden and I have mescalin mix in pots on the patio just for fun. Just make sure that they have enough space to grow properly. You wont be able to feed the family for the year, but trust me it’s enough to give you the bug to really want that garden for next year.
What do I have the worms for
I have worms in the worm bin for easy composting. Call me lazy, but it is pretty nice to open the garage door and the worm bin is right there. I have worms in the compost pile too. They were thrown out there when my worm bin failed last year. This is working out nicely because it is moving the pile along even faster than without them. So to answer the short version answer would be for quicker composting .
Thanks for the question, it makes me feel like someone is reading. LOL! Hope everyone had a great weekend!!!
You remember those 3 cute chicks that I had to have? Well, I would call them pullets now not “cute chicks”. I feel that I do have to go on the record and tell everyone that Trixy (the one that was so ugly I serious contemplated taking her back) is still not beautiful, but by far has the biggest personality. Glad I didn’t send her back, she is kind of funny. Anyway, the coop is almost done and I cant wait to throw them out. I am ready to have my laundry room back. weather permitting, Cam and I are going to paint the coop this weekend. Come on weather, work with me.
I hope you all have big plans for the weekend. Get outside.
I thought I’d better give a worm update. They are doing great! All are alive and counted for.
I am so excited to announce one of my many spring projects is complete.
The worm composter is up and running.
The worms have arrived!!!
They came in two recycled margarine containers
My son Cameron was my photographer. A little blurry, but here are the worms (red wigglers).
Wetting the bedding
moist but not to wet
This is the worm bin I got from a nice woman off of Craigslist.
some scraps we have been putting aside for the worms arrival
Cameron cut up the orange and apple to help the worms along.
We added used coffee grounds, the bedding and finally the worms.