Farm Journal for November 1, 2017

 Dual Compartment Compost Bin - 5' x 4' x 4' 

Dual Compartment Compost Bin - 5' x 4' x 4' 

Phew, I'm spent! Because I spent half the day building the frame for this dual compartment compost bin. A large one to accommodate bulky chicken coop litter. Tomorrow I'll wrap with hardware cloth and build a locking lid to keep out raccoons, coyotes, tree rats, etc. etc. I buy my hardware cloth in bulk rolls on Amazon, because it's significantly cheaper than in stores. I used treated boards for the foundation only to discourage rot and termites. The compost does not actually touch the treated boards. In other words, no chemical leaching into our garden beds.

I didn't use a plan for this project, just notched out a space in the hillside near the chicken coop and built to fit. The front of the bin will have two columns of stacked removable boards, making it easy to pull out finished compost while the other compartment is still cooking. Here's a photo I found of a similar style bin illustrating the removable front panels:

 http://midatlanticgardening.com/did-you-know-the-myth-of-synthetic-fertilizers/

http://midatlanticgardening.com/did-you-know-the-myth-of-synthetic-fertilizers/

Last week the hens and pigeons celebrated their 1 year birthday-versary. Our four adoptees (2 hens, 2 pigeons) were adopted a year ago and our four pullets were hatched a year ago. That brings our coop total to 6 hens and 4 pigeons. Here's "Egg" enjoying her birthday yogurt & banana breakfast:

can-hens-eat-yogurt

Here's a comparison of pigeon eggs to chicken eggs. The two pigeon eggs in the bowl were the first laid by our 5-month old who was hatched here in May. We don't want to increase our pigeon population so we do eat the pigeon eggs the same as we eat chicken eggs.

can-you-eat-pigeon-eggs

I'm behind on my fall/winter garden planting, but I did get these garlic starts in a couple weeks ago. Pictured below are the scapes of Inchelium Red, a buttery all-purpose softneck variety with large cloves. If you want to try growing garlic, place individual cloves in loose moist soil in the fall before the ground freezes/chills. Each clove grows into a bulb for harvesting early next summer. Softneck varieties like warmer climates, hardnecks like cold climates. I bought these softneck garlic starts from Baker Creek.

inchelium-red-softneck-garlic-los-angeles-california