Compost Illustrated



This photo was taken inside our animal shed, looking down through their outside run towards the veg garden. I picked it out to write about individually as I thought it illustrated our composting system in operation so eloquently.

As I’ve written about elsewhere, our composting system starts off in this outside run. All our household and garden compost is combined here with excess animal food, mucky bedding and anything else organic that we can find. The goats and chickens add their own special contributions to it and the chickens mix it up whilst scratching for the worms and insects who come to inhabit the thick layer that builds up.

In this photo we had just finished clearing out the first stage compost. We’d started recovering the area with deciduous leaves, but the rain stopped work. Behind the enclosure you can see the pile of compost we removed. From here it will only travel downhill.

We use a RAM pump to supply the animals’ drinking water, and in the summer months I keep the overflow dampening down this area to encourage decomposition otherwise it just dries out in the summer sun. Next to the fence you can see the remains of the pumpkin and squash plants that had been taking advantage of the nutrients and water that seep out of the run. We made the most of the tender greens and flowers all summer, the mature fruits went into storage for winter use, and the remaining tougher greens were fed to the goats. Nothing wasted!











One response to “Compost Illustrated”

  1. thesnailofhappiness Avatar

    I love your gravity-based system – a fine example of permaculture design

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