Say this five times fast: Soil Cycle's Solar Dehydrator
When you enter the Soil Cycle space these days (***with a mask following proper social distancing guidelines***), your eyes will be drawn to this impressive wooden structure perched above our magical garden in the corner. Subscriber and volunteer, David Ketchum, built us this solar dehydrator out of reclaimed and recycled materials to dehydrate our future black soldier fly larvae and other delicious stuff we can get our hands on ;)
As we get our black soldier fly (BSF) program up and running, we are eagerly anticipating the benefits of this efficient composting method. In a newsletter earlier this year, we explained how BSF are prime waste management critters, consuming twice their body weight in just one day! This can significantly increase our composting turnover rates, subduing our growing need for composting space and assisting especially in the colder months. After completing their life cycle, BSF larvae become a protein-packed food source for aquaculture, animal and pet feed, and even human nutrition for the brave! The best way to store the larvae after use is by drying them out. Here is where our new solar dehydrator comes into the picture. The only thing better than a fresh tomato is a sun-dried tomato - as is the case with preserved BSF larvae! With our new dehydrator, we will be harnessing the sun's energy to further complete the food cycle. Thanks David for this amazing dehydrator, and thanks BSF for your contributions to feeding the world!
Brewing Compost Tea
Are you looking for a natural boost for your home plants? Do you want better-tasting, nutritionally dense vegetables from your garden this year? Look no further! Soil Cycle is now brewing and selling compost tea with at least 24 hour notice. True to its name, compost tea is a liquid extracted from the circulation of water through compost. Not the type of tea you would sip with cream and sugar but rather your garden's preferred cuppa. Compost tea can be sprayed onto plant leaves or simply drenched around the roots. Since our compost tea is alive with nutritious microbes, fish meal, kelp, and other minerals, it must be used within 4-6 hours of purchase. Orders must be placed ahead of time so we can brew it for you!
$10.00 per gallon - bring your own repurposed milk jug for extra sustainability! Just email or call if you'd like to purchase some compost tea.
Trez, our Garden Manager, has been working hard to create a beautiful, nurturing, and useful demonstration garden at the Soil Cycle space. She made a video tour of the garden - check it out to see the amazing work she's done! If you are interested in learning more, register for our upcoming Virtual Medicinal and Edible Plant Walk!!
To those of you who purchased our compost this season or attended one of our virtual workshops: THANK YOU! We love sharing our time helping you achieve your gardening and sustainability goals. If you missed our Backyard Composting Workshops this early summer and are itching to learn more about composting, we have the 2 hour workshop content available on our website.
Gardening with Worm Castings - Success!
Gonzo Farms in Missoula, MT is focused on fostering diversity through agriculture with the goal of supporting the health of the community. Their produce is both delicious and unique. This year, Gonzo Farms planted all their starts in Soil Cycle's worm castings! Here are some photos of their starts to give you a taste of the magic of using worm castings...
~Have time on Thursday or Friday mornings to turn compost?
~Seek an opportunity to learn about and help manage compost or worm bins?
~Have rain barrel expertise to share?
If you answered YES to one of the questions above, then we want you! Please consider volunteering with Soil Cycle to help make our dream of a sustainable Missoula possible.
Thank You For Your Support!
With Love, from our Board and Cyclists! Keep on turning...