Thursday, April 3, 2014

The Only Book My Dad Ever Read

The only book my Dad ever read (other than the Bible) was the Rodale Book of Composting. I gave that to him one Christmas thinking he might look at a few of the tables on what you could compost. You got to understand that Dad, like many farmers, wasn't much of a reader, he would read the occasional article in the his farm magazines and he definitely read many of the AgriEnergy publications, but otherwise "not so much".

Composting was a major exception.

Much to my surprise Dad read the "Book of Composting" several times cover to cover. It was around this time when my brother Kevin started both a lawn mowing service and tree care service. With all that organic matter in the family it was like a "perfect storm".  Dad just couldn't resist turning that into compost. The wood chips would go into the feed lot with his calves to get "seasoned" a bit if you get my drift. Then grass, wood chips, feedlot scrapings and anything else that wasn't nailed down went into the compost piles.

All the neighbors probably wondered what Lynn was doing piling up all that dirt down by the road.
This was black gold, pure humus and good for any soil or plant problem. He spread compost to start new hay seeding and got the best stands ever. He improved all of those thin spots in the field where the glaciers just didn't get it right. He also used it to repair the spots below the terraces where the dozers push off the top soil.

He called one of these spots that the glaciers messed up "Gobblers Knob", because they used to see turkeys there. It was a bit of a local land mark with the neighbors and he had a color sign commission that he posted out in the field to show how to get there. (No one ever went there except my Dad, but you had to know him, he thought that was great.)

We will learn more in our next post "The Gobblers Knob Controversy".

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