Big compost move

compost turnedAs mentioned in a previous post, I have a pretty big bucket list for the summer which includes a new chicken coop, redworm bin area and moving the compost bins to another area of my garden.  First step was the relocation of the compost bins to an area of my garden that has become less productive due to an abundance of tree roots sucking up all the nutrients in the soil.

new localI decided to take advantage of the warm weather yesterday and took on the compost bin move.  First step was to empty the contents of the four full bins.

emptied binsThis created a mountain of mostly composted material.  The four bin has been sitting in this one place for the past thirteen years and it was a little stubborn to get loosened from the ground.   The main problem was that I was alone but determined to get the bins moved.  After loosening the bins I tipped them out on the fronts.

composter tippedNext step was to pull the bins out of the mountain of compost I had in the way.   During the process, the fourth bin came apart so I am back to my original three bin system.

composter draggedI am used to dragging around three bin systems so the drag to the new location was relatively easy.  After positioning the bin in the new location I squared the bins, tightened a few nuts and pounded a few nails.  I decided to replace the front slats in two of the bins and I reused old slats for the third bin.  I had contemplated building new bins but they were in good enough shape to survive the move and should last for several more years.

compostnewlocalThe next step was to start the screening process to use the finished compost in my garden and move the unfinished material to fill the bins in the new location.  Contrary to popular belief, compost does break down in the winter and I have a lot of ready to use material.

compost sI am not finished with the move but I screened out five wheel barrels full of finished compost which I used to mulch my raspberry and strawberry beds.

screened compost2

I also used my redworm screen to separate worms from the finished compost.redworm screenredworms1I will finish screening and moving the remaining material tomorrow if the weather permits.  Once the material is moved I can start the new chicken coop construction.

With the weather being so warm, my bees have been flying around cleaning out the hive of dead bodies and they are collecting water.  I will take advantage of the next nice, non windy day to open the hive and inspect the contents.  I will rotate the top and bottom boxes and I will start feeding them sugar water.   I hope to harvest a little honey prior to medicating the hive for foul brood in the next month or so.  Glad the bees survived the winter but March is generally the month when hives are lost due to starvation so I hope the weather allows me to tackle the hive needs soon.

bee cleaning

On another note I built a new ladder planter shelf for a friend this week.  She plans to stain it a dark brown.  It turned out pretty nice for my first try at this type of project.

plant shelfLastly,  I planted my Christmas Amaryllis too late in the fall so it is just now coming in to bloom.  Better late than never.



About urbancompostsystems

I am a retired law enforcement officer who is an avid gardener. I have a compost bin business named Urban Compost Systems. I believe strongly in the concept of growing healthy food and I utilize chickens and redworms in my "compost system". The only ingredients that I need from outside my system are leaves in the fall and some supplemental grass clippings from neighbors. I make hundreds of gallons of compost in my four bin system. I thoroughly enjoy the summer bounty I get from my yard and I take great pride in knowing that I am using my yardwaste to make healthy compost for my yard.
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4 Responses to Big compost move

  1. Kim D. says:

    I need to toss 4-5 more bags of leaves over the fence to your compost system. Did you move it north next to our shared fence? Thanks for the eggs, they were so tasty!! ^_^ Kim

    • Your welcome. I have moved the compost bins to the north end. The ground there is not growing much due to all the tree roots. The trees will like the compost. I am keeping the chickens where they are but will build a better coop on the west fence. Just toss the bags right over. Thanks

  2. Drew says:

    Thanks for the update and pictures. I am really looking forward to the nicer weather. I have been reading a bit on compost systems. I would like to build one this spring.

    • Thanks Drew. I had a good time screening the compost. It’s a little bit of work but nothing better than enjoying a little physical activity on a nice day. I hope to get into the bee hive today and see what is going on. Compost bins are fun to build but wear gloves when working with the hardware cloth and make sure everything is square or the wire won’t fit properly. I always tack the wire all the way around the frames to make sure they are good before doing the finish tacking down with poultry staples.

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