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What I’d Like to See More of in the World

Life can be funny sometimes. I don’t mean “ha-ha” funny. I mean that sometimes when you take a decisive action in a certain direction, you are lead down a path you didn’t necessarily expect to find yourself heading towards. As a newcomer to composting, I’ve already been asked what I plan to grow. Good question. While I’ve managed to keep the azaleas, hydrangeas, and rose bushes I inherited alive when I moved to my little guest house here the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains, I’ve never actually grown food. After doing a little research about what I could grow, suggestions for beginners typically ranged from tomatoes, lettuce, and cucumbers, which would make a nice salad, but I actually eat a lot of zucchini spirals, so I think I might go rogue and consider growing zucchinis instead.

The composting process has been interesting. When Christine Lenches-Hinkel of 301 Organics comes to my home, one of the first things she does is take a temperature reading of my composting. She does this to determine the activity level of the microbes. The higher the temperature the more active the microbes are digesting my food scraps. It’s as if they are doing their own work-out and giving off heat!

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. My picture for today is a soil rich in microbes. A giver of life you might say, microbial activity in soil helps plants grow, keeps the soil warmer during cold temperatures, and also pulls carbon from the air into the soil where it nourishes the plants and trees. So, how do we get more microbes into our soil? By composting.

Thankfully, I’ve had a lot of support during the initial phase of my composting adventure. Christine of 301 Organics has been an endless source of encouragement and information. She is among the very few who can talk about food scraps, paper scraps, and yard waste and make you feel like you are a part of something much bigger than yourself. I thank her for her upbeat spirit during a time when we need it most. Fellow composters and friends have also been a source of inspiration. In fact, last week a group of us sat down together with a little wine and cheese (I mean why not, right?) to watch the premier of Kiss the Ground’s new movie on Netflix. It is an empowering documentary highlighting soil regeneration as an effective solution to climate change. This simple idea of composting took on an entirely different meaning for me. By regenerating our soil we can take part in stabilizing and restoring the Earth’s eco-systems, grow our own food, and help our young people feel a sense of purpose and possibility.

Health Soil, Healthy Plants, Healthy Climate, Healthy Humans. That’s something I’d like to see more of in the world. How about you? What would you like to see more of in this world?


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