Thursday, March 25, 2010


New York State's Orange County still has considerable farming activity despite the high demand for homes within commuting distance of New York City. Dairy farms have been replaced with more than million dollar homes but onions are still commercially grown there. An ancient lake covered much of what is now Orange County and the black muck soil of the former lake bed grows prodigious crops of onions. We have a small pond that is filling with muck. Perhaps this muck will grow great onions here.

Six pails were filled with the muck. Some how boys of all ages are drawn to water in the spring. Without getting my shoes wet or soiled, the pond muck was moved to the garden. In the past muck has been added to the compost piles. This was less than fully successful as muck bricks baked in the sun.

Three days of working the muck with a stone fork have produced this black crumble. Rain is helping to mix the muck and the soil. Daily attention may eventually produce a fine soil mix. We will have side by side trials of onions grown in the standard garden soil and onions grown in the muck mix. We will report success or failure.

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