We got one job finished! Calling in the exterminators.

I can officially state that the compost pile is complete and all off the materials have been moved into place and got a lot of water to get it building up some heat so it can break down the materials correctly.  I need to add in some more “browns” and will move a straw bale closer to the compost area to add to the pile easily.  Adding a straw layer should keep all unpleasant odors and bad bugs to a minimum.  I have to say I have not had a problem with odors even with the old Pallet compost pile.




Using a leaf blower on your compost heap. Air or at least oxygen makes the compost heap work better. While it might be a pain/ require effort adding air to your heap is a good thing and almost as critical as adding water, browns or greens.  When you turn over a pile you are adding air. There is no reason you can’t use a leaf blower to add a bit of air to the heap.  I think it is a lot easier to use a blower to turn the compost heap rather than turning it by a fork, if you can be effective.

Mom got to use the weed wacker today along with a block of instruction. She knocked down the alley way weeds and I’m getting a lot of mulch on sale.  That thick layer of mulch should help keep the weeds under control as some puncture vine/goat heads are trying to creep into the beds.  The Sunchokes and sedums have done a good job as “good plants” that choke out the weeds but  I need to spread them along with more mulch out in the alley beds.  So far both plants have not spread but have just got thicker and bunched up.   The best way I think to explain how the sunchokes spread is like Iris flowers.  Like Irises they need to be thinned and replanted.  I would recommend using sunchokes if you have a hot/sunny area with poor soil and limited water as a great plant to help choke out weeds plus the plant roots/rhizomes are edible.  My sedums have done okay in the alley way garden but now they are getting expensive to buy as they are very popular with zeroscape/ drought tolerant landscapes.

Mice and bug problem is beyond us and we are getting some info on having in some exterminators.  I’ve added more tincat metal traps and sprayed down the outside of the house and much of the inside with bug barrier and we are still losing ground in this battle.  I’m still gathering info and quotes for the job to get done in July but so far it looks like the cost will be about $200.00.  I think if we get the critters stopped from breeding more critters for a couple of months, Mom and I can maintain getting rid of the critters!

Sometimes you just get overwhelmed and must call in the specialists for a problem.  I don’t there is anything wrong in spending money for pros if you have done your best and failed to correct the the problem.  I have really learned how important it is to store everything in good containers.  None of my food barrels, buckets or bins have been breached so I did that part of food storage correctly.  I failed when I put something in the basement and did not store it properly right away.   Add in a tough winter and you get an explosion of problems.  I’m not saying you should not have traps, pesticides and other ways of preventing any infestation.  Right now you can call in the pros to help get your home vermin free. Maintenance is a lot cheaper than trying to get rid of an infestation.

4 Responses to We got one job finished! Calling in the exterminators.

  1. My compost bin is 4’x4’x4′, it’s layered cardboard on the bottom, leaves, cardboard and garden waste, up to the top. I am experimenting with raising worms in it, that means controlling the temperature. It’s so deep and broad I have not been able to check to see how they are doing. I don’t care if there are bugs around it, or critters, they are all over where I live in a rural area. Mine is a “cold” compost bin, I added a bunch of tules (cat tail shafts) to the top. I live on a river so they are easily had, they act like straw only bigger, they break down quicker as well. I then use the partially decomposed stuff for bedding in my worm farm, the worms love it. I’m now gathering lily pads to put on the pile, I think they will work great in keeping the moisture in. I am concerned about the worms I added to the pile, what’s your thought on that? I really enjoyed this blog.

    • Jamie says:

      Jacques, I’m unaware of a “cold” compost bin. I can generate 150 degree F. temps when the bin is maintained. My problem has been maintaining the compost properly. Now that the bin looks good, is solid and has some of the basic materials to generate heat to break down the plant material I might make some good compost fro next years garden.

  2. LeeAnn says:

    I think an exterminator is an excellent idea. Beyond getting rid of the mice they will also advise you on how to keep them out. The obvious problem with mice is the filth and getting into food, but the not so obvious is chewing on wiring, clothing, bedding, getting into couches and various other dangers. It will be $200 well spent.

    • Jamie says:

      It’s so tough to admit you need some outside help when you are a prepper/survivalist but some times you need to call in the pros to fix a problem.
      A good thing I’m doing is organizing and adding more bins and shelving for storing things properly. I have added more traps and learned a few tricks to PREVENT any future problems from happening.
      So far it looks like the exterminator cost will be in the range of $100.00-$200.00 and considering I have spent at least $150.00 on mouse traps and bug killer and failed, spending even $200.00 to get rid of bugs and mice is looking like a bargain.

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