Sustainable Gardening News Issue 2
on Newstands Now


Just kidding, but it has been distributed and also resides right here in the Archives.  I’d love some help with:

  • Additions, corrections to my article about Composting.  I’ve noticed on local listservs that people can’t stop asking questions about compost, no matter how often they’re answered.  So we’re trying to get it right and park it on some websites for reference.
  • In the On The Blogs section I’ve included some newsy or on-topic posts from the Rant and my own blog but please – if you have one, send it along so it can be added it to the discussion.  And you’d better believe I added Michele’s wonderful post about rules for beginners – with its 38 excellent comments – to my Getting Started page. 

And I welcome any other suggestions you might have.  I’ve decided to publish the newsletter at the leisurely pace of once a month, with no particular date of publication.  Just trying to stay loose. 


  1. The composting page is fabulous, and I would just like to expand on the leaf composting. Even people who have very limited space can build a frame out of 4 foot wire fencing, to any size they like – for example a 4 foot in diameter circle, and fill it with leaves, and keep filling it with leaves because they begin breaking down almost immediately. You can put 40 or 50 bags of leaves in such a frame. Whether the compost is ‘finished’ or not I dig it in in the spring.
    Also – the late Larry Lightner who taught me about this ‘cold compost’said that this method can also be used to create ‘spot gardens’ by using a wire fencing frame of an appropriate or desired height, and a desired size or shape and filling it and filling it with leaves. Then you can actually plant seedlings right in the leaf bed. I would make a slight depression and add a quart of so of soil and then plant my vegetable seedling, squash, tomatoes, etc. I thought plants that would ultimately get fairly large worked best. The thing to remember is that these leaf beds do need to be kept watered. Then at the end of the season, after the harvest, Voila! You have more nearly finished compost! I can attest to the efficacy of this method because when I had a baked hard as cement clay area where our barn burned down, I gardened in leaf beds for two years and got good harvests. Leaf compost is amazing.

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