Hello and welcome to The Compost Bin. I'm Compostwoman and I live in Herefordshire with Compostman and teenage daughter Compostgirl. We have just under 4 acres of land which contains a woodland, polytunnel, small orchard, garden and veg plot. We grow our own organic produce and make lots of cider, wine, jam and chutney. We also make a lot of compost. We share our lives with Chickens, Cats, Guinea Pigs and assorted wildlife. We try our best to live a more self reliant lifestyle, growing and making and fixing and mending and re-using and re-cycling stuff, if we can.
I used to be a Research Scientist, but that was many years ago. I now work as a freelance environmental educator/writer/lecturer/Forest School practitioner and community artist; I also spend a lot of time volunteering as a Master Composter, Master Gardener, Love Food Hate Waste cookery demonstrator and hens@home mentor. Doing all this allows me the privilege of helping people have fun outdoors and live more enjoyable and sustainable lives.
This blog is a record of what I have been up to from day to day. I might write about something I have done in the garden, an article I have written for a magazine, the latest batch of chutney I have made, a training course I have attended or "just" my daily routine of cats, chickens, compost and mud.
I hope you find something to interest you in The Compost Bin, remember there are lots of "How to" guides about all sorts of stuff and remember to click on the photos to make them full size!
Wednesday, 1 January 2014
Happy New Year.
I hope 2014 is better than 2013, which quite frankly was not great for us here at Compost Mansions. Although the weather was better for gardening in 2013, ill health made it harder for both of us to get the things we wanted to achieve, done.
This trend continued right up until the very end of 2013, as I injured my shoulder and neck muscles just after Christmas and am finding it hard to sit up straight, bend down or turn my head. This just added more misery to the post 'flu aches and pains I was already feeling. So yet again lots of outside jobs have had to be put on hold until I am well enough. Being ill before Christmas also knocked a hole in my work schedule
Despite this, life has to go on and the chickens need tending, regardless. I had to go outside today in the wind and the rain, to put down pallets in the hen runs, so the poor things had somewhere dry to stand. At 2 pm it was nearly dark! The hens are not impressed by this weather or by the dull days (and who can blame them?) and huddle together in the barn, moaning at me to " make it stop" whenever I go outside.
Blondin the nearly-a-Cockerel dances around them, nearly but not quite brave enough to try his luck with the Big Hens. His fellow hatchling Treacle (who was formerly called Creosote) is not quite yet mature enough to squat for him and she just runs away, so he is not happy at all.
He is a handsome fellow and has a very melodious crow, and is not (so far) at all aggressive.
While outside this afternoon tending to the hens I looked around through the grey veil of rain onto a totally sodden garden which looks a mess. The bindweed is taking over the veg plot to the point where I am seriously considering razing the existing beds back to grass and starting all over with new ones, elsewhere. The ground is awash and everwhere I walk I leave foot shaped mini ponds behind.
Gloomy weather makes for gloomy thoughts in my head, which only longer days, outside work (with less rain!) will put right.
So, having written this post and having had a good look around Blogland, I am off to watch the first episode of the new series of Sherlock - can't wait to settle down in front of the fire and enjoy it :)
And it is STILL raining outside - and now the wind is rising and wuthering around the house. My thoughts are with all of you and hope you are safe, wherever you are.