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Master Composting

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When I saw the article Master Composting, I almost wanted to laugh. Master Gardener, Master Composter, who needs a fancy title to garden? I have been gardening and composting here in Texas since the 68s. I had a neighbor complain that I was spreading poison gas in the neighborhood by composting.

When you are born and raised in the country, as I was it is just something you did like planting in the spring and harvesting in the fall. You didn’t call it anything you just did it. Composting is only one part of gardening, there is mulching, adjusting the PH of your soil, knowing what plants like what type of soil and PH. At one time this was all part of living.

Then after the second world war all this changed.

Developers came in with zero lot lines, people moved more into apartments and condos. More convenience foods, more eating out. Nod people have to be taught from the beginning, classes and such. Back then classes were in school for reading, writing and arithmetic.

All these master and certified tittles doesn’t help the plants grow any better. I wonder what will happen when some people get ready to turn their compost and find a gardner snake or run into a nest of fire ants.

I have tried to bring this idea of community gardens to Cedar Hill but no luck so far. They would rather spend money on a fancy recreation center. Churches and businesses own land down by Joe Pool lake and they just sit on it. Look at the cases of people growing marijuana on this land, and there are cases in other parts. If people are out there tending gardens, they could be the eyes and ears for suspicious activity.

Back in the old days, out in the country, you didn’t have trash pickup, that was just for city folks. Meat was wrapped in butcher’s paper not in hard plastic. You used the paper to start the fire in the coal and wood stove. Vegetables were caned in a glass Mason jar. Potatoes were stored in a root cellar. If there were any tins at all, you flattened them and buried them.

As the saying goes, you only need two books, a bible and a seed catalog. One will tell you there is a God and the other will show you there is one.

Ralph E. Shartle

Cedar Hill


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