Before and After: My Compost Pile Turned Wildflower Garden

wildflower garden

The wildflower garden that almost wasn’t – the tale of the compost pile, wildflower seeds and a gardener intent on weeding. How my curiosity of growing plants spawned my own holistic healing.

wildflower garden

My Own Holistic Practices

One of the first things my husband and I did (much to his chagrin, as it was very cold!) when we first bought our home involved setting up raised garden beds so I could begin my journey as a gardener.

I had been developing my green thumb for years with keeping house plants alive, and the joy I found taking care of something and watching it grow through the seasons.

I nurtured an orchid for almost 8 years and watched the March blooms with expectation each year. But I had not yet started plants from seed or learned what to plant when.

Gardening helped something come alive in me that had gone dormant. I think most gardeners will be able to relate with that.

Having some skills in life is not only important it helps you become a growing and well-rounded person. In a world and culture that seems to value expertise and a single-minded focus, I personally find that having multiple interests and projects is much more interesting.

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A Holistic Approach

I did not necessarily begin gardening as a way to support my holistic approach to life, though through the last few years gardening has taught me some things that help me in my holistic approach to living a well-rounded life. Nature has a way of sparking joy and helping one slow down.

I now understand that through gardening, even though other things in my life have not happened in the way I would have liked all the time, I can find awe in watching seeds begin to sprout and plants begin to fruit. Nature has a course to run, and even though there are years where pests destroy my crop or disease spreads among my tomato plants, I learn how to companion plant to better defend my plants and nurture the soil so it helps the garden thrive the next time.

It is definitely a work in progress. Such is life.

As I learn more about the cottagecore lifestyle, frugal lifestyle, and off-grid lifestyle, I keep adding experiences and skills that I can incorporate into my holistic lifestyle.

wildflower garden

Shameless Plug for Gardening

I did not grow up learning how to plant things. Maybe I just was not interested or something else. In any case, I knew my limitations so I started my hand with succulents. These indoor little beauties were pretty resistant for lack of water (most of the time). I quickly learned that having plants meant basic care, and without basic care I was pretty much just giving my money to the store and saying “haha, jokes on me!” Plus, I liked having some greenery around.

Did you know that house plants help you live a toxin free lifestyle more easily?

With some confidence built around succulents, I branched out to orchids and then tropical house plants. All seemed to be doing quite well with my southern exposure.

If I can begin gardening, anyone can. Take care of something. Help it along. It will teach you things and give you beauty in return.

wildflower garden

Planting a Wildflower Garden in My Compost Pile

The original plan was to create a compost pile next to my raised bed gardens. The first year or two, I diligently placed material in the pile and stirred it regularly. This would include things like vegetable, fruit and egg scraps, soil, leaves, grass clippings and the sort.

Then last year I am not exactly sure what happened except I do not remember doing much of anything with it. So much for using the compost.

Then this year, as I was preparing my garden for transplanting, I weeded it first. Well those weeds turned out to be volunteers from last years wildflower patch in my garden, and that garden began to wildly boom in the nutrient dense compost pile.

Like a match made in heaven!

I am going to turn this into a thing. Every year that compost pile will be filled with flowers!

Before and After

Here is a picture of the beauty that was my first compost file. Very sad looking, indeed!

wildflower garden, compost pile

You can see that the before was not very slightly (and it certainly needed some TLC). Well, with the accidental addition of last year’s wildflowers my compost has turned into a bouquet of greenery that butterflies, various types of bees, hummingbirds and yellow goldfinch birds love.

wildflower garden and compost pile

If you are wondering how to create a low maintenance wildflower garden, well, this is it.

I have seen some pretty beautiful and functional compost piles out there – this was not one of them initially. This was thrifty and functional. But afterwards, much better, no?

Wildflower FAQs

Creating a wildflower garden in a compost pile may not be for everyone but I will keep doing it for a little bit in order to attract pollinators and because I like how it looks.

Starting a wildflower garden anywhere is something I had always wanted to do. I hope to one day be planning a wildflower garden in a larger space but for now I am pretty content.

Can I just throw wildflower seeds in my garden?

If you are wondering how to care for a wildflower garden, well it is pretty simple. Throw down some deeds, water them and let mother nature take over. Those hearty plants will keep going and going.

What is the best time of year to plant a wildflower garden?

You can throw down seed anytime, but I would recommend really trying to start a wildflower garden in the spring time after the last frost in your area.

Will wildflowers come back every year?

Next year I am pretty certain I will have more wildflower “volunteers” grow up again and again thereby adding to my soil and also alleviating an eyesore.

My Favorite Wild Flower Quotes

“Among all of the roses, be the wildflowers.”

“Wildflowers are the music of the earth.”

“Like wildflowers, you must allow yourself to grow in all of the places people thought you never would.”

Backyard Joys

Here in the Midwest, the summertime can be hot, humid and best left outside; but there are moments especially in the morning and evening that are so full of busily growing life and plants. You never know what a wildflower garden will show you.

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1 Comment

  1. That is so beautiful! I love a good wildflower garden, even if in small scale 🙂

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