OMG I almost blew a gasket today which would have resulted in me going to jail for murder.
I got a later start than normal on the compost pile today, and ended up having a lot more work to do with it than I normally do, so it took me longer to get it all done. Normally I am finished working on the compost before the yard crew shows up to do their maintenance, this time they were working on the yard while I was still finishing up, and I am glad they were because I saw something that shocked me and almost made me completely loose it on them.
One of the guys on the yard crew was carrying a white plastic pressurized plastic tank with a spray wand around the yard and I saw him spray a liquid on the yard where I am getting ready to put in a raised bed garden. I yelled at him to stop and asked him what he was spraying, to which he replied "Rnager".
Ranger is the brand name for a herbicide from Monsanto that contains glyphosate, a chemical that has been linked to reproductive issues, cancer, and other illnesses in humans and has been proven to kill honeybees, one of the main pollinators that are necessary in gardening and farming. It is also sold under the name Roundup.
Glyphosate is acutely toxic to fish and birds and can kill beneficial insects and soil organisms that maintain ecological balance. It is also suspected of causing genetic damage. Glyphosate residues can persist in the soil for OVER A YEAR after application. Not only can the specific site where the glyphosate was sprayed not be used, glyphosate has been measured 1,300 – 2,600 feet away from its application site. While he was spraying it the wind was blowing the overspray all over my garden plants and compost piles.
I felt like strangling him to death with my bare-hands right there on the spot. All of the work I am doing to turn the dirt in our yard back into living soil to produce food for my family and he is destroying all of that work with that spray wand.
I now have to wait at least a freaking year before I can be sure that all of that "liquid death" has been processed out of my soil so I can start over again trying to build another garden. I cannot take a chance that the food from my garden now will not contain that poison and cause harm to my family. All of the compost that is almost ready to be used now has to sit and cure for a year before it can be used. All of that work for nothing this year.
Well, enough of that and on to the compost. Pile #1 maintained 120 degrees yesterday and was still holding there again today. It is still in the Active Compost range but it is no longer generating the high heat that it was last week signaling that the majority of the decomposition process has been accomplished.
Pile #2 continued to hold 160 degrees for the past 5 days which really surprised me. Today it finally started to come down slightly to 158 degrees