How To Make Compost So You Can Grow A Fantastic Garden

Friends and neighbors marvel at the sight of my lush gardens. The abundant harvest from my veggie garden graciously gives to my family, with plenty to share with others.

When strolling near my flower gardens, your eyes are dazzled by luscious blooms and your nose tantalized by the sweet, sweet fragrances carried on the breeze. Beautiful butterflies, fuzzy bumblebees and dainty finches find nourishment in my yard. All this is not only a result of my passion for gardening, but the nurturing given by the soil. What’s so special about my garden’s soil is that it’s homemade, so to speak. Not only homemade but super rich in nutrients.

So how do you make homemade soil? Cut the grass!! I used to dread mowing the lawn because our lawnmower has the bag attached to keep the clips. Every time the bag gets full I have to dump the clippings…and that’s a lot of trips to the back corner of the backyard! I didn’t realize the benefits that were to come from this somewhat tortuous task. WHAT BENEFITS!!!!

So…I have a good sized pile of grass clippings in the corner of the yard which isn’t necessarily the nicest thing to look at. A problem easily remedied and I’ll get to that later. This pile is the key to my magnificent gardens. This pile turns into dark nutrient rich soil…loaded with nitrogen.

There are a few ways to go about tending to the clippings/soil. Turning it over is a good idea. I leave mine stationary and at the beginning of the season, when it’s time to prepare the ground, I use dirt opposite the side I used it from the year prior. It’s a little workout shoveling from the bottom of the pile…but it feels good, even better when the results of my hard work are visible…and edible. After tilling my garden space, I mix in the soil from the grass pile. Then I’m ready to plant.

Now, the dilemma of the eyesore in the corner of the yard can easily be solved. There are so many ways to fix this problem. Possibilities increase with creativity. I have used a trellis for morning glories to climb on. Being so close to the rich soil, they quickly thrive and distract from the pile or completely cover it up. It all depends on how you position your trellis. You want to be sure to leave a way in and out to your dirt supply, leaving it accessible throughout the season. Sunflowers can be a nice touch too. Their large leaves are easier on the eyes than decomposing grass. My favorite distraction is the pumpkin patch.

Pumpkin Patch? Yes. Pumpkin seeds like to be planted in mounds. A few years ago, after I put the garden in, I realized I had pumpkin seeds I hadn’t planted and had no room left for them in the garden. They require a decent amount of space…a patch of the yard. I had no desire to till a whole new space for them and make mounds…and wow…I already had a large mound in the back corner of the yard! I simply poked two seeds in each side of my pile and made history on our block.

A close friend who lives down the street made traditional pumpkin mounds in his garden and within a couple weeks we had a friendly competition started. He fertilized his soil with…the brand he likes, and I relied on the naturally rich soil from my decomposing grass. Pumpkin plants are garden hogs. His plants grew. Filled up his garden quick. My plants grew. Took over half of the backyard. The most maintenance I had to give them was an occasional watering. They thrived.