Saturday, 22 March 2014

A Word on Humus and Compost.

These terms are used so often, yet the meaning of them and differences between them are generally not very well understood so here is a short post that "was" intended to provide some clarity.

Compost is the intentional accumulation and placement of organic matter, the aim being to accelerate the decaying process. The intentional part is important. Dead stuff on the ground is NOT compost, just decaying organic matter. It is the controlled, or semi-controlled conditions that make it compost.


Welcome to our Online Store where you can find Forest Garden/ Permaculture plants, seeds, bulbs and Polyculture multi-packs along with digital goods and services such as Online Courses, Webinars, eBooks, and Online Consultancy.  We hope you enjoy the store and find something you like :) It's your purchases that keep our Project going. Yuu can also find our full list of trees. shrubs and herbs for forest gardens on our website here 
  • Compost, even if mature, is still breaking down and supplying nutrients. When applied in your garden it has the immediate effect of adding nutrients available to plants and bacterial components that contribute to a healthy soil food web. As the seasons progress and decay continues, it eventually converts to humus.



Humus is supposed to be a stable organic component, the result of the decay of organic matter whether that be natural decay or, as we see above, decay during composting.
  • Humus being stable cannot be penetrated by microbes and is greatly resistant to further decomposition. Thus stable humus adds few readily available nutrients to the soil, but plays an essential part in providing its physical structure.
  • Humus improves soil structure (and texture) and has remarkable water retentive properties. 
  • Humus  has a high cation exchange capacity (CEC), which means it acts as a storehouse for plant nutrients not allowing them to wash away (leach) from the soil with the water passing through the soil. High CEC is why humus is regarded as being fertile.  




Since writing this post it has come to light there is a debate regarding the existence of humus. Humus may be extinct.

Needless to worry it's still super easy to build great soil.
  • Add plenty of organic matter to the soil via chop and drop mulching, manures and composts 
  • Keep soils inhabited with diverse communities of living plants at all times and mow and prune these plants to encourage root shed that add to the soil organic matter. 
  • Avoid any compaction to the soils you are cultivating - by foot or machine. 
  • Keep soils well hydrated - like a moist sponge is perfect 
  • Don't waste your money on nasty products such as Roundup


Regenerative Landscape Design - Online Interactive Course 

If you would like to learn how to design, build and manage regenerative landscapes we'll be running our Regenerative Landscape Design - Online Interactive Course that starts on May 4th, 2022. 

We're super excited about running the course and look forward to providing you with the confidence, inspiration, and opportunity to design, build and manage regenerative landscapes, gardens, and farms that produce food and other resources for humans while enhancing biodiversity.


Regenerative Landscape Design Online Course

You can find out all about the course here and right now we have a 20% discount on the full enrollment fees. Just use the promo code RLD2022 in the section of the registration form to receive your discount. 

We are looking forward to providing you with this unique online learning experience - as far as we know, the very first of its kind. If you are thinking of reasons why you should do this course and whether this course is suitable for you, take a look here where we lay it all out. Looking forward to it!

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

We offer a diversity of plants and seeds for permaculture, forest gardens and regenerative landscapes including a range of fruit and nut cultivars. We Deliver all over Europe from Nov - March. - Give a happy plant a happy home :)


Our Bio-Nursery - Permaculture/Polyculture/ Regenerative Landscape Plants 


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Design and Create Webinars - Forest Gardens, Urban Gardens, Permaculture, Regenerative Farming   


We're hosting a range of online learning sessions including how to create habitat to enhance biodiversity, how to design and build a forest garden, polyculture design software tutorials, regenerative farm, and landscape design, urban gardening and much more. If you would like to be notified when our next sessions are coming up please add your email below and hit subscribe and we'll be in touch.




You can also register for our online training, services, and products directly here.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Support Our Project 




If you appreciate the work we are doing you can show your support in several ways.

  • Donate directly to our project via PayPal to balkanecologyproject@gmail.com or via Cash App to £Sytoma 
  • Comment, like, and share our content on social media.