July 17, 2022
Let’s begin with death.
We need death in the garden. We find this in a simple process of decomposing organic material.
When we allow our apple cores, coffee granules, carrot peelings, eggshells, grass and plant clippings, dry leaves, shredded newspaper, and chopped wood, to become compost, we are making something that brings life.
At Hope Community Garden, we produce our own compost on site by inviting people to bring their kitchen waste and add it to one of our compost heaps. We use this compost to feed the food, flowers, and herbs we grow.
There is an art to making compost. Aim for between 25 and 50 percent soft green materials and the remainder woody brown materials. Air is necessary for composting to occur, so turning it regularly is important. During dry weather, give your compost a water to keep it moist. It can take between six months and two years to reach maturity. Good compost will be dark brown, with a crumbly texture and an earthy smell resembling damp woodland.
It is now possible to transform a human body into two wheelbarrows’ worth of compost in four to six weeks. Natural organic reduction – the formal term for human composting – is legal in three US states however it is still yet to be legalised in the UK.
How wonderful it could be to choose to become soil after death and regenerate the earth that supports us our whole lives.