Like most homes in Seattle, ours is built on a slope consisting of clay / glacial till. The top soil layer is thin and underneath is a hard, impermeable layer of clay and rocks. What is a gardener to do? You can truck in top soil, but that is an expensive proposition. Turning the soil and loosening helps to some degree, but it doesn’t really solve drainage and nutrient issues. The only thing that really helps: adding plenty of organic material, i.e. compost.
After 2 failed attempts, we’ve finally got our worm bin going nicely. The worms are surprisingly effective at disposing of kitchen scraps. The only downside: they don’t produce a lot of compost (AKA worm poop) to improve our soil.
So finally we got serious about compost production and built a 2 cubic yard compost bin based on this plan. Even though it’s scaled down from the original plan, it’s still an impressive size – it’ll take a while for us to fill it with compostable material. Once filled, compost is supposed to be ready in a matter of weeks.
This should really help improve our garden. And it’s very satisfying to be able to recycle your own stuff, rather than paying the city to haul away this valuable resource.