Compost Honey Hole
A "Honey Hole" is an underground compost pile. Giant pumpkin growers use
this method, to prepare their garden to grow record-breaking pumpkins.
The concept of a compost honey hole is simple: Bury a mixture of compost
and manure where you will place a plant(s). As the plant's roots grow in
search of moisture and nutrients, it reaches down to the rich compost and
manure, fueling the plants growth.
Similar to the Honey Hole, the Compost Trench is a method where compost is
buried underground in rows. Plant a row of your favorite vegetables in the
garden soil above it. Like the Honey Hole, as the roots grow, they find the
underground treasure trove of nutrient rich compost and manure.
By burying compost, you are also practicing a method of worm composting.
The worms in your garden will be attracted to the compost, aiding in the
decomposition process. Along the way, they will leave worm castings, which
in turn, feed your plants. Also see:
Raised bed gardeners also use this method,. Each Fall the raised bed is emptied
to 1-2 feet below the level of the garden soil. It is then re-filled with
raw compost materials, in preparation for the next growing season. Over the
long winter months, it decomposes, and is ready for your plants in the spring.
Raised Bed Garden Soil.
How to Make a Compost Trench or Honey Hole:
There is no right or wrong way to bury compost. Ideally, burying compost
in a hole or in a trench, is best done in the Fall. Bury raw, un-decomposed
compost and manure. The decomposition process gradually takes place over
the winter months. Your garden is ready to plant over the compost, as soon
as spring arrives. If you bury compost in the spring, the materials should
be partially, or completely, decomposed
Begin by digging a hole or trench. Dig the hole down to a depth of
one to two feet. While garden topsoil often goes down just a few inches,
the roots of many plants can go down to a foot in depth, or more.
Now your Honey Hole is ready to be filled.
See What to Compost
Fill the hole with alternating layers of compost, garden soil and manure.
Top the Honey Hole off with 2 to 4 inches of rich garden soil. The finished
project should be a couple inches above the level of your garden soil. This
will allow for settling, and help to drain off excess water.
To mix or not to mix- If you use the layered approach above, mixing
the materials is not necessary. If you feel better about mixing the materials
first, go ahead and give it a few turns. There is no right or wrong way to
mix materials. A pitchfork is helpful, to turn and mix materials.
Vermicomposting and Worm Compost
Raised Bed Garden Soil - it's a similar
Raised Bed Garden Frames: Plastic raised bed frames, in a variety
of sizes. They can be single deep (5 1/4" high), or extra deep(10 1/2" high),
using one or two plastic timbers. Extra deep models, are by far the most
popular. The extra height makes it easier to work and harvest your plants.
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