Nancy garden fence

The local deer herd will no longer have their own 24/7 deli to munch on now that the fence is up.

This gardener no longer provides our local deer herd with their own 24/7 deli which they have been enjoying for far too long. A handsome new sturdy cedar post and heavy wire fence now surrounds our edible garden and fruit tree area. Garden Helper is beside herself with joy at the prospect of no longer having fence repair duty. This is a garden dream fulfilled for both of us. 

Inside the fenced garden two new waist-high raised beds (another garden dream coming true) are now filled with a healthy mixture of rich soil and freshly made compost. Seedlings are ready to plant but we are waiting for warmer days and nights to stay safely above freezing. June 1st seems to be the magic date, but we know to be prepared in case Mother Nature has other plans.

After a long winters rest, the composters are hard at work doing what composters do best.  They were happy to get started with the first grass mowing and brown goodies from garden clean-up. 

A thoughtful neighbor brought us two large bags of her spring rakings, a welcome gift. 

Our three worm boxes are full of nature’s richest compost and ready to be distributed to newly emerging perennials and young seedlings, giving them a welcome nutritious boost. Mother Nature’s hardest workers were able to turn our winter kitchen food scraps into their rich worm castings for the garden, and all for free!  Garden Helper has two five gallon containers ready to make freshly brewed worm compost tea. There is more than one way of making this nutritious plant tea and we have chosen the simplest method. It is very scientific! Scoop about three cups of worm castings (poo) into a nylon knee high stocking. Tie off and put in five gallon container of water. Stir often for two or more days. If you have a small fish tank motor and plastic hose and electricity handy, your stir job is easier. Water your plants with the rich, coffee-colored nutritious tea. Your house plants will also love you!

There is so much more to say about the rewards of composting. Look to future columns for this interesting and easy to do garden chore.

Nancy Riebe is a master gardener and master composter from Belgrade whose columns appear weekly throughout the growing season. Reach her in care of