Spring announces her arrival and I suddenly realise that the garden needs and awful lot of love and affection before the season truly begins. Amongst the countless chores that need to be done is one that I’ve been putting off ‘forever’; emptying the first of three large compost bins that have been quietly ruminating for several years! But a trip to the garden centre and a purchase of 40 bright red geranium plugs (instead of the 14 that I actually needed!!) meant that procrastination was no longer an option.
Now I’m not a compost expert and my ‘recipe’ for making compost is pretty hit and miss and there’s certainly no science or black art involved in it. But I’ve been putting this job off because it seems that everywhere I look at the moment I come across articles about ‘How to Compost Successfully’ or ‘Compost Guides’ with full instructions and copious lists of do’s and don’ts, but I’ve just been emptying kitchen scraps, dead flowers and grass cuttings in, with gay abandon. What if that’s not what a real composter does? What if I’ve broken some unspoken composting rules? What if I empty my bin and it’s full of……… well what would it be full of if not compost!
It was like opening a treasure chest! Each turn of the fork presented me with rich, damp and dark compost, packed full of worms and bursting with goodness. Obviously the mix of my old veg peelings, broken egg shells and wilted blooms made for composting heaven. These baby geraniums were in for a treat! I even found the remnant of Brontë’s Year 8 ‘Design an Egg’ Project, a bit startling to find a beady eye gazing at you out of the earth!!
Fortunately a pile of plastic pots that were destined for the recycling had been overlooked and we’re now pressed back into service, so trowel in hand I set to.
What a satisfying afternoon. And to complete my golden afternoon of gentle labour I had the delightful company of Mrs. Blackbird who was extremely grateful for the compost’s offerings of fat and juicy, wiggly worms.
It looks like this Summer our garden is going to be ablaze with Bright Red Geraniums.