The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Uses for half-composted horse manure

Green tomatoes

How do you use up an entire truckload of partially composted manure in a couple of hours? Start out by topdressing --- applying bands of compost just far enough away from plants so the high-nitrogen effluent won't burn the roots.

Topdressing asparagus

I put the manure on top of mulch near sensitive plants like asparagus and underneath the mulch near hungry plants like tomatoes. On top of mulch is safer but slower since manure juices will take a while to leach through the straw and into the soil. Be sure to stay at least three to four inches away from plant stems either way.

Lasagna garden

Next, I spread an inch or two of manure onto each fallow garden bed (on the right in the photo above). Worms and cats will mix the manure in, resulting in rich, ready soil in about a month. Similarly, the entirely new bed I created (on the left in the photo above) will be ready to plant into by early to mid July.

Young butternut plants

The only real question left is --- can I have a little more please?

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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"Worms and cats will mix the manure in" Yikes! Cats "playing" in the garden usually means they're (to put it bluntly) shitting in the garden and then you have the possibility of getting toxoplasmosis from that. From Wikipedia: "Toxoplasmosis is a parasitic disease caused by Toxoplasma gondii. Toxoplasmosis is usually spread by eating poorly cooked food that contains cysts, exposure to infected cat feces, and from a mother to a child during pregnancy if the mother becomes infected." . . . "Toxoplasma gondii is considered the second leading cause of foodborne-related deaths and the fourth leading cause of foodborne-related hospitalizations in the United States."

Comment by Nayan Fri Jun 8 08:06:19 2018

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