August 2007

What’s New At

Growth Explosion!

Hi everyone! Apologies for the lack of posts lately. Things have been extremely busy on the work front. I am happy to report that things are going to change this fall! I’ll be focusing much more on my various online eco-endeavours! I’m the type of person who feels strongly about pursuing one’s passions in life – so I’ve decided to really start taking my own advice!

I just thought I would pop by today for a bit of an RWC update. Certainly some interesting things to report on these days.

As you can see in the picture above, my outdoor compost bin is surrounded by a jungle of green! If I had provided some support for my compost tomato plants you probably wouldn’t be able to see the bin at all!

My First Ripe Tomatoes

I spotted my first ripe tomatoes yesterday. Despite the incredibly rapid growth of these plants in general, they have be somewhat slower to produce ripe fruit than those in my tomato garden (of course, the fact that that they got started more than a month later, and receive less sunlight MAY have something to do with that!). I sampled one and it was tasty!

Aside from a jungle of tomato plants, a monstrous catnip plant (the biggest I’ve ever seen) has also been growing beside the composter as well. The picture below doesn’t do it justice, primarily due to the fact that a proper view is being blocked by the sunflowers in front of it! Those sunflowers are actually some of the spare seedlings from my Terracycle Challenge (more on that in a minute), and after a very slow start have managed to completely dwarf all those grown in pots (for the challenge).

For those of you who were left wondering what on earth ever became of the challenge, I apologize for not providing any updates here! I ended up providing challenge coverage on the EcoSherpa blog. Be sure to check out my latest update (also the final wrap-up) for all the details:
Terracycle Challenge Wrap-Up (UPDATE 2018: Ecosherpa is no longer online so link removed)

Ok, well I think that’s all I’ve got for now! Be sure to stay tuned – much more to come!

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Compost Bin Tomatoes

Compost Bin Tomatoes

One of the potential downsides of worm composting is that you can end up with a lot of viable seeds in your finished compost (seeds that would typically be killed during thermiphilic composting).

Composter Tomato Plant in Early July
Humble beginnings back in early July

At the end of the growing season last year I chopped up all my tomato plants and put them in my bin, along with a large heap of partially rotten fruit. It was therefore no surprise to see some tomato seedlings pop up this year – one of them literally growing out from the side of the bin!

Just for kicks and giggles I decided to let them grow! I was actually quite curious to see how well they would do without any further assistance from me.

Interestingly enough, even though they started a good month behind the tomatoes I planted in the garden, and even though they’ve received no additional fertilization (my garden tomatoes have slow release fertilizer sticks), they are going completely gangbusters!

The plant growing out of the bin actually broke when we had some high winds not too long ago – yet it still continues to thrive!

I’ve always wanted to test out a system that combines an active wormbin with some sort of vegetable bed, and this little experiment has only increased my desire to do so!

The fact is, I’m not a huge fan of separating worms from compost. I’m really happy with the cool separation method I tested out not too long ago (described in this post), BUT I tend to procrastinate when it comes to actually using all the worm compost I create.

Having an integrated composter/plant growth system might be the perfect solution for lazy composters like me!!

I can’t wait to see what sort of tomato crop these plants produce!

I’ll be sure to keep you posted!

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