Compost: Hotbed for New Life (5/5)

Veronika Bond Humus

5 – Time and timing of the Composting Process How long does it take for compost to turn into humus? This is a common question. The answer is, it depends… It depends on the season, the speed of creating the composition, on the size of the ingredients and a few other factors. The process of building up a composting pile …

Compost: Hotbed for New Life (4/5)

Veronika Bond Humus

4 — Composition of the Compost There are many different ways to set up a compost pile! Here are two relatively simple options: A – If you have a lot of materials and can build the compost quickly, arrange ‘brown woody stuff’ (more carbon) and  ‘green leafy stuff’ (more nitrogen) in alternating layers (about 10 cm each). If you have animal manure, …

Compost: Hotbed for New Life (3/5)

Veronika Bond Humus

Photo: The Humus Project 2 – Size of Ingredients for the Compost The smaller you chop your solid ingredients, the faster they will decompose into the desired ‘black gold’. That’s a good rule of thumb. The decomposition of the compost seems to happen all by itself — if you wait long enough. Well, that’s a myth. As soon as our …

Compost: Hotbed for New Life (2/5)

Veronika Bond Humus

Photo: Ian Voce 1 – Ingredients for the Compost A ‘classic compost’ is made of a mixture of ‘brown and green organic materials’. The ‘brown materials’ don’t refer to animal manure. These are woody plant substances like chopped twigs and small branches, and they contain carbon. The ‘green materials’ contain more nitrogen. Standard instructions also often suggest ‘grass clippings’. The …

Compost: Hotbed for New Life (1/5)

Veronika Bond Humus

Photo: Aaron Burden Spring is in the air, the perfect time to think about compost. What is it, and how is it made? Compost, as the name suggests, is a composition. We want to compose a vibrant piece, using many different tones and shades of earth life; and we want to do this in such a way that the composition …

The Queen of Dirt

Veronika Bond Humus

Photo: Gabriel Jimenez Soil is sometimes called ‘dirt’. The word dirt originally meant ‘excrement’; and indeed, fertile soil has a lot to do with excrements. Animal feces make an important addition to the compost; they are called manure. And the end product of the digestive process of earth worms makes the best humus. However, dirt reminds us of uncleanliness, insignificance …

The Humus Revolution

Veronika Bond Books

Can we heal the soil, save the climate and change our food habits? Ute Scheub and Stefan Schwarzer believe we can. In their book Die Humusrevolution (The Humus Revolution, 2017) we can read that monoculture, agrochemicals and CO2 emissions are destroying the planet, and if we don’t do something fast, then we’ll all starve to death. This grim message is …

The Dying Soil

Veronika Bond Humus

Photo: Patrick Hendry They say, the soil is more fertile after a fire. That’s only true, if there is enough soil on the ground. ‘Charcoal and ashes on the rocks’ — and no soil? Real forests, productive orchards and healthy vegetables won’t thrive there. Soil erosion is ‘the latest global problem’. Ecologists have written and warned about it for a …

Letter to the Earthworms

Veronika Bond Edaphon

Photo: Ricardo Gomez Angel Dear Earthworms, End of September 2017 we were given a small cardboard box. It contained about two or three hands full of garden soil, some fruit and vegetable scraps, and perhaps a dozen earthworms. We were delighted about the gift. Josh had prepared a worm hotel for you. It is made out of four large plastic …