Saturday, May 9, 2009

The Secret Gardens

The vegetation at the Secret Garden is continually fed.  Sometimes we use horse manure.  Sometimes we use sea weed that washes up on the beach.   We continually grind up leaves, grass and chop up larger branches into little pieces.  We avoid using store bought fertilizer.

We discovered where you can buy compost for $8 a square meter.  Just how much is a square meter of compost?  It is approximately the size of the bed in my 2004 Tacoma.  That's a lot of compost for $8.  (It's on Sale!) We bought 18 cubic meters.  I had someone deliver 8 meters, and I've been transporting the other 10.

This compost is from Autoridad de Acueductos, or rather our water company.  In Mayaguez there is an official compost factory.  It's huge.  They take sediment from filtered water, along with solids from other treated waters, and these are mixed with wood chips and they're heated and then left to cure.

The result is a dry black mixture smelling as though it is burnt.  When it gets wet, it really smells burnt, but this goes away after a few days.   While I was waiting my turn to pay, a dump truck driver told me he delivers this compost to farmers and their plants grow as they're on steroids.
The compost plant is down the street from the Mayaguez Airport.  Their "hours" are from 7:30 to 11:30, and then from 12:30 to 2:30.  Their hours are somewhat fuzzy.  Not exactly from 7:30 to 2:30, but a little bit less.

In the few weeks I've been using this stuff, I am extremely happy, I see the results.  I'm using the compost to raise the garden beds and fertilize everything else.  I stopped the by the Coqui, our Rincon PR Newspaper the other day, and their gardens are fabulously manicured.  My style of gardening is  tropical jungle.  I like the feeling of walking through where plants have gone wild.   I like dangling vines, chirping  crickets and coquis after sun sets, in our secret gardens.

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