Life in the Slow Lane: Compost | The Verde Independent – Arizona News

Life in the Slow Lane: Compost | The Verde Independent – Arizona News

Yes, that is a picture of dirt. Well, not dirt. It’s compost, specially made for me by piglets and chickens. It started out as the contents of the turkey barn. That included manure (better known as poop), straw, turkey food, dirt and, most importantly, water.

The turkey barn roof leaks in a couple spots. These aren’t little leaks. These are “turn on the faucet” leaks. Every time it rains, water hits the barn roof, channels to these low spots then gushes through the holes onto the barn floor. That would be okay if the barn floor were dirt. Instead, there’s a layer of cement plant conveyer belt which is made from rubber, covering the dirt (not my first choice). I’m told the belt material comes from the cement plant up on the hill near Jerome. As near as I can tell, every old timer in the area has chunks of this stuff because all the locals have worked at the plant at one point or another.

But rubber on the ground means the water can’t soak through. Instead, it puddles on the rubber and creates a goopy mess that eventually rots. As long as it stays moist it’s a horrible stinky rotten mess. Then, once the weather gets hot enough to suck the moisture out of every living create, that gloppy mess because a crusty mess. Two months ago I confronted the three inches of crust with hoe, shovel and rake. Two days of work left the same three inches of crusty stuff about two feet outside the coop doorway, albeit broken up into shovel-sized pieces.

Oddly, while the birds ignored the stuff when it was in the barn, once it was outside they…

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