My garden soil is more of a sick shade of gray than a rich black due to a lack of organic material. The fields have been hayed for as long as anyone can remember so all the nutrients have been taken out over the years, with nothing done to improve it. The area is so large that the small amount of compost that I produced didn't make a difference in fertility, so last fall I covered all three beds with a deep layer of spoiled hay and Tim tilled it all in this spring. This year I am determined to raise the quality of the soil as much as possible for future garden harvests. My ultimate goal is dirt that looks like chocolate cake, teeming with earthworms, and able to produce veggies so tasty that even my children will say, "Yum!"
Yesterday after I ran 4 miles I took a quick shower and headed up the road to the riding instructor's barn for a little nitrogen boost for my compost piles. I backed the truck right up to her manure pile and pitched it half full of wood shavings and not-too-smelly horse poop. After supper, while Will watched Julia Ellen, I shoveled it right out and then thoroughly rinsed out the truck bed. Tim doesn't like any of his possessions dirty and would not have been pleased if he had seen the pile of excrement, but my rationale is that the truck is 15 years old and we did deem it a farm truck. One day we will be hauling live animals in it, so this exercise is just a little foreshadowing of what will come. Yes, I will wash it out with soap and make it clean enough to sleep in, 'cause I might be staying in it once my husband finds out what I did.