Compost piles

Jason and I are trying a couple of different compost methods.  

The first uses a backyard composting recipe aimed at getting the pile to heat within the range of 130-155 with a certain schedule in order to kill human pathogens and weed seeds without destroying beneficial bacteria and fungi.  So far, this pile seems to be working although since we turned it it’s not heated throughout.  It does require a good amount of monitoring so that it heats within the temperature range without going anaerobic.  But this should make really great compost tea eventually.

recipe compost pile 7-30-14 Compost thermometer reading 7-30-14

The other compost pile is branches with grass clippings and some kitchen scraps.  This will break down over time but not quite as fast.  We have been monitoring the temperature on this one too.  It’s not as hot but that is maybe not as critical because we will leave it out for longer.

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Adjusting

Mud flaps 1 Mud flaps 2

Jason and I put the mud flaps on my car today.  Don’t worry–we got them from E-bay rather than making them ourselves ;).  I think Boss is also starting to settle in.Jason with Boss

Commodities crops

Some of what we have is conventional agriculture that the neighbors help us plant.  This year Jason decided to do some sweet sorghum and milo, which is also called grain sorghum. I know that it’s probably not the best thing for the soil to plant like this, but the rows are appealing to me in their orderliness.

sorghum milo rows 7-24-14

First Kansas storm

swallow nest 7-23-14

There is a swallow’s nest right outside our front door.  I think the babies are probably pretty well-sheltered but one did fall out yesterday a couple of times and died.

A lot of things here are new for me.  I had never heard locusts before.  We also did see fireflies two nights ago–which I had seen but not since I was about 4 years old.  

A storm is coming in right now.  Everything got really still before it started to get dark.  Now it’s dark enough that we need the lights on inside the house.  I can see how Kansas storms are both beautiful and ominous.

storm coming in 7-23-14 storm coming in (2) 7-23-14

Preparations for Kansas

Kansas gear

I am still trying to get my house and yard ready. My house will be listed the day after we leave. My family had a nice party today for my birthday and for me leaving. After the nice gifts that I received I feel fully prepared.