Compost Club

After many enquires the Henry Doubleday Research Association, will launch a new group to explore the wonderful world of compost. Often touted as the ultimate fertiliser, this mysterious substance is now often used in conjunction with plant growth and food production in general. With many interpretations and methods of creation, compost  is also poorly understood. Considering that compost can supposedly reduce, if not, eliminate the need, for artificial fertiliser and it's also apparent ability to increase water holing capacity and also decrease disease in soils (and plants) it's probably timely to investigate the topic and try to validate the ideas with science and application.  


The Compost Club will focus on the practical aspects relating to the culture of 'beneficial' organisms, such as bacteria, fungi, nematodes, and protozoa. We will share our experiences and learn together.


Microbes offer significant benefits as 'primary' decomposers. Think of your own digestive system and where we would be if not for these partners. If you are interested then come along to the Centre Tuesdays 1-2pm and Saturdays 11am to 1pm.


Early in 2012 HDRA Treasurer Sue Wall decided to offer an Organic Garden class to U3A Hawkesbury Members every Tuesday afternoon. A group of senior women joined and began preparation of a 14x4 metre plot, which was then divided into seven beds. Quantities of organic matter and compost were incorporated and different types of mulches were used on different beds: sugar cane, lucerne, shredded paper etc.


The EarthCare building provided a lot of learning about the methods and principles of organic gardening, bed rotation and sowing seeds. By the end of the first year there was a harvest of tomatoes, kale, beetroot, onion, beans, peas, lettuce, rocket, zucchini, garlic, red cabbage and broccoli.  With such success a herb garden made of recycled materials and currently holds: wormwood, parsley, oregano, mint, chives, rosemary, coriander and chili.


Gardening still continues to this very day. It's a lovely peaceful area away from the building and other gardens on the site with an apple tree adjacent, compost bins conveniently close by and an old park bench in the shade of the windbreak trees.