Today we are going to discuss our compost pile and your yard equipment purchasing.
One of the easiest built composters is done with old used car tires. Not just any car tire will do. Well, sort of, but the easiest to work with are a certain type. Here is what you are going to need, 5 used tires That should be easy enough, right? Note, I said five, but you will only use 4 at first. So what you are going to do is go down to your tire dealer and ask them if they have some old used tires that you can get. They might want to charge you a little bit. If they do they are just trying to maximize profits. The people's car that they came off from has already paid a disposal fee. So if you take the tire, then they won't be disposing of the tire, so they can keep the fee already collected. Anyway, if they are smart, they will give you the old tires, it is good for business. Maybe you will come back when you need tires. Once you have the ties, bring them home and lay the first tire on its side. Maybe it would be good to stack/lay the next tire on top of the first one. Then fill in the tires with everything biologically speaking, from your yard. These are things like grass clippings, weeds, eggshells, and yadda yadda. For the most part, anything that will compost. Then once you get 4 tires filled up, one on top of the other, you will lay that 5th. tire next to the 4, then you will pull the top tire off and get the material to go into that 5th. tire, then pull the next over and on and on. Once you have all the material transferred, you will have rotated the material and then you are on your way to making your own compost. You will end up with great compost and a tiny fraction of the cost of buying what you need. Plus you won't be sending the material to the landfill thus being a politically correct person in the community. Actually, I just added that for perspective, but in reality, you won't be throwing money away. Who cares about you being politically correct, no one actually cares anyway, so why waste your energy. Just do what works for you and your needs.
The tire size you want to get is one with a very short sidewall. These are the types used on most newer medium-sized cars. A typical size would be, say, 275/45 22. The 275 is how wide the tire is. the 45 is how tall the sidewall is and the 22 is how big the inside is. So the higher the first number is, the better. How small the 2nd. set of numbers is better and how big the last number is is even better.
There is good reason to use stuff from your own yard vs. from somewhere else. what happens is that the plants grown in your yard will create immunity for your specific location for the new plants to be grown in the next growth cycle. It is like creating your own vaccine for your specific location. When you use compost from somewhere else, it is not specifically targeted for your local spot and the needs required for plants trying to grow in your garden. Plus you won't be introducing new pathogens and foreign plant material and seeds into your garden spot.
Here is why the previous paragraph is of vital importance. Last year I figured that I should practice what I preach. So in doing a considerable number of containers for container gardening, I went totally as many of you would have to do it. I went and purchased all of the material used for the growing medium for the containers. I purchased the stuff from 5 different stores. The stuff looked amazing. The plants started to grow good when first planted, then they crashed. I was perplexed. I worked up several hypotheses, but nothing definitive. Then I used some of the material in the first round of plantings this spring. The seeds did not grow at all. When I went to work, figured out that the soil had some soil sterilant in it. Not one single bag of the stuff I purchased was supposed to have any kind of sterilant of any kind in it. This type of thing is not an uncommon problem in commercially developed soil building materials. I was really torqued. So I jumped on the tractor and took the back bucket attached to it and went to my son's farm, scooped up some soil from the freshly plowed and disced soil, and used it in the future plantings. I added some natural nitrogen material along with local natural minerals and no I have a thriving container gardening situation. I say the situation because I have them in a greenhouse. I still have a few pots of the last year's "stuff" and no, nothing will grow in those few pots.
When you go out to purchase any kind of yard equipment you will find everyone and their dog selling tillers, lawnmowers, edgers, and all related yard and garden tools. The first question to ask is this, "If this machine has issues, where do I take it to have warranty work done on it"? If it is within the first 30 days, the store should offer you a 30-day money-back satisfaction deal. Most large chain stores usually won't do it. Small stores usually will do it. Many times the authorized warranty service center will be hours away. Be careful about buying machines or equipment that has the service center a long way away. I recently purchased a lawnmower from a small store chain. It would not start and run. I could fix it, but if I touched it, it would void the warranty. After spending hours with the manufacturer's service people, they told me to just take it back to the store. Their authorized service centers were a 2-hour drive in either direction. So I took it back to the store, they gave me my money back, so I purchased a nice weed whacker. I am now going to see how mowing a lawn with a weed whacker works out. I do have another lawnmower, one of my kids "borrowed" it and didn't tell me. I figured that someone purchased it from me on the 5 finger discount program. lol. So it will work out just fine as I needed a good weed whacker anyway. I hope you see the idea I am trying to present here.
I hope all is going well for you with your gardening projects. As always, thank you for your time and if you have questions, feel free to check in with me. I will do what I can to help you. (KK).
End of Report.