Sunday, June 1, 2008

Compost Happens...slowly

I never knew how little I knew about composting until two things happened this week: 1) I read something a friend had posted on her fridge that listed the nitrogen content in different things like bone marrow, horse manure, guano (by far the highest-who knew?); 2) I came across an article I wrote about 10 years ago when I worked for Citysearch (when they actually had an interesting website) about composting that was so full of b.s. the article smelled worse than my compost pile. Although I don't think I could ever go with the wild, wonderful world of vermiculture, I will try to keep up my slow, dry pile'o'compost.
I'm always amazed that things actually decompose in this dry climate. My compost piles right now are growing something. The plants look melonish or squashish. This means my compost piles are not hot enough to break down whatever seeds I have put in there. Phooey. How hard can composting be? You just throw in all the ingredients and let it bake for a really long time. I think my ingredients are too brown. I don't have any green material to put in because we have no grass. This is a hard political position to hold in my neighborhood. Everyone gives us grief about our brown front yard because we haven't been able to xeriscape it yet. My neighbor is constantly heckling us about not having grass, but I think it is such a waste of water. Maybe with a child to run around on the grass I will change my mind but I think grass is foolish in a desert. So you are either in the grass-loving-water-wasting camp or the bane-of-the-neighborhood-no-grass camp and everyone hates you for bring down the property value. Oh well, if I can't even compost I don't know how they expect me to take care of grass.

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