I got in over my head in an attempt to get a winter cleanup done in a matter of hours. One day off, unpleasant weather, guests arriving soon, trip out-of-town after that, much to complete.
Even though it was December, it feels like winter came early this year with temperatures already in the 20s and 30s. It was cold and cloudy, a combination I detest, but I bundled up and started hacking down or digging up everything dead or dormant, creating quite a pile of debris in the process.
What to do with all this material?
In my small garden I try and compost all my garden waste and much of our kitchen waste as well. This usually means chopping up everything by hand into small enough pieces to fit in one of my 3 compost bins. In small doses this can be a weirdly satisfying, if obsessive activity. With a great amount of stuff, it is overwhelming.
In order to keep some space free in my limited containers I must sift (more obsessive satisfaction) the contents of the most broken-down container and spread it. I usually try and do this in spring and in fall when I have a more-or-less finished batch. Due to the aforementioned fall laziness, this did not happen. My 3 bins were already full.
After a minor fit of frustration indoors, I sipped some tea, warmed my frozen hands and tried to think of a way to clean up this huge mess. Brandon came out to help me.
He went to the store and got some large trash bags. We stuffed everything into some bags and left them near the compost bins in the hopes that I can perhaps sift compost later and make room for this new stuff. Not a great solution, but it got the job done and I was able to sweep up and get indoors before the sun set (4:30 p.m. these days).
It looked much better when we finished and I sure was grateful for his help.