Surprises

My cheap method of food scrap disposal, otherwise known as the worm bin, has been a source of contention.

“It stinks.”

“It makes my car smell.”

“It’s disgusting.”

I’ve been ignoring all of these complaints fairly easily–sometimes children like to make noise. It’s smells like dirt–nothing like a compost pile. I’ve been relatively happy with it until it recently started growing a lot of mold.

I use the garden claw to bury food scraps under a layer of shredded paper. I’m a little squeamish about touching worms and decaying food.

To be fair, it has been a while since I’d emptied the “worm juice”. But with five months of food scraps, the silly thing has gotten pretty heavy.

Well the other day we had a delivery, and the lady scheduling the shipment said it was company policy not to leave paved roads. That meant that I received a phone call, hopped in my van (the Mr had removed the seats the night before) and met the driver down at the cemetery. While he had a lift in his truck to move around our new piece of “glass or metal furniture”, he needed a little muscle power from me to get it into the van.

I figured if I could lift a heavy box, I could handle the worm bin. So I trekked out to the garage to see what could be done. After I removed the inner container, I was surprised to see more than four inches of “worm juice” on the bottom. No wonder it was moldy. The Mr has this old gallon pitcher he uses to fertilize the indoor plants, but I couldn’t find it anywhere, so I emptied most of the juice into a giant mixing bowl we use to water Bogart during the summer. That wasn’t quite big enough, so I grabbed my watering can from under the kitchen sink.

“Worm juice” is supposed to be a great fertilizer, so I decided to use it on our newly planted fruit trees. Of course getting this potent liquid from the garage down to the trees without spilling it all over myself was an endeavor. On my first trip, I went through the garage, into the hall, out the door to the deck, down two flights of stairs and then across the slope to the trees to end up here.

I thought it would be picturesque to include the fruit tree in my photo, but it totally obscures the two flights of steps. Believe me it’s a ways.

Since this was the beginning of five trips from the garage to our mini-orchard, I decided I could negotiate the steep slope next to the garage on my way back up. The Multiple Sclerosis throws off my balance especially when I’m going down hill. I’ve been known to lose my footing and bounce off people heading to the backyard from the garage. It is where the girls went innertubing last winter. While going down that hill on my own–without the Mr to hold onto–is a little hazardous, going up is no problem.

But when I got to the slope, I was so surprised. The Mr was busy last weekend, and dug steps into the hillside for me.

Bogart has no need for the steps, but he did try them out as well.

Now this was no small feet. We are on the edge of a large U-shaped valley carved out by glaciers. The dirt around here is hard and rocky. I am feeling the love. I easily made my way back and forth from the garage to the trees thanks to my sweet, handsome man.

When I finished pouring out the fertilizer, I decided to modify the worm bin design. I grabbed the drill, the largest bit and made a big hole down low in the outer container. Don’t worry, I’m using a cork to plug it up, and then I can just drain any runoff each week. I’m hoping this will take care of the excess moisture and also save my back.

A friend of ours who has a worm bin (seeing his very high tech version was the push that got me from thinking about it to actually making one) had trouble with worm juice build up killing some of his worms. Remembering this, I decided to dig around a little to see how my worms are doing. That’s when I had my third surprise of the morning. I found something very hard and round but vaguely familiar covered in nasty… It was a tennis ball. Apparently little buddy is interested in worms as well.

I’ve been known to leave the lid off the bin to run inside and get the paper from the shredder or some more food scraps. He must of taken a look and dropped his ball inside. No worries; he’s quite delighted with his very disgusting toy.

The wine cellar came fully stocked with a case of tennis balls when we moved in. There are plenty of these to keep Bogart occupied for hours.

Bogart did chew up the Bible verse bookmark I got at ladies’ group this week. The Mr said now the dog will have holy crap. I know it’s a horrible joke, but it still makes me laugh. I love that guy–and the dog, too.

Any surprises at your house lately? How do you get rid of food scraps? Do you compost? Have you tried using a worm bin?

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2 thoughts on “Surprises

  1. Pingback: October At a Glance « bigwhitehouseonthehill

  2. Pingback: What’s Going On? « bigwhitehouseonthehill

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