Saturday, July 27, 2013

Matt's Compost Sifter

Matt has been composting for years now.
He's also been talking about making something to sift his compost with for years now, too.  He wanted something that would enable him to sift out any remaining large bits, such as mango pits, that could use more time to breakdown leaving him with just the rich, fluffy, wonderful compost to use.
But, it was one of those back-burner type ideas.  But, then he snagged what seemed to be the perfect boards for the job from a neighbor's trash bin.  With some staples, brackets, and wire mesh he had on hand he built himself a simple little sifting box.  So simple and just perfect for the job.
I must say, the compost looks amazing afterwards.  See, Matt is always going on and on about his beautiful compost--wanting me to smell it, crumble it through my fingers, and so on.  I appreciate composting as an action and a garden amendment, but I guess I just lack the hands-on enthusiasm for it that Matt has.  But, even I can moon a little over this sifted compost.  It is just rich, dark soil again, it seems.  It has no smell whatsoever aside from that pleasantly earthy smell of freshly turned soil.  There are no recognizable bits of still-decomposing vegetable matter.  It is cool and soft through the fingers.  Its pretty darn impressive.
We spread a good layer of it over the beds in the garden until we ran out of compost.  It seems we will never make enough compost.  We can use whatever amount we can manage to produce.  The compost top-dressing will enrich the soil as it is incorporated by rain and insect life.  It also keeps the weeds down.  Win-win.  It also make the beds look nice and pretty.  Triple win.
Tools and equipment that you can make yourself from simple supplies and basic know-how are cool.  Its impressive how much they can improve the way things work.  A planting grid.  Wash cloths.  A garden sink.  Tomato cages. And so on.

8 comments:

  1. Great job Mat! we need one of those :)u are so creative and masterful in the garden.

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    1. Matt sure loves anything garden related! Its his place to shine, I think.

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  2. What a great piece of handmade equipment. I've seen smaller round garden sieves but that shape looks ideal. I do make compost, but haven't put in quite as much effort as I could, can see the benefit of sifting. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. After Matt gave a presentation to our community garden this spring he has really been motivated to work on his compost. Its something he has done for a long time, but as you say, maybe without quite as much effort as possible. Now that he is turning and sifting it I can really see a difference. But, the great this about compost is you can put as much or little effort into it as you want/have. It works out either way...just a little faster or slower. Have a great day!

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  3. That is some rich looking compost. Love the DIY sifter.

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    1. I was surprised at just how nice it looked, I must say! And thanks, I think it will prove a very valuable tool to have around.

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  4. Awesome! That is exactly like the homemade sifter my Daddy made and I used for years. This made me smile from ear to ear.

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    1. If I can help bring a smile to another's face it is a darn good day. I trust it will serve us many a good year, too. :)

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