A new event lawn at the James Farm Ecological Preserve in Ocean View hosted the 2019 Native Plant Sale and Green Living Expo May 4, thanks in part to compost derived from poultry.
Perdue AgriRecycle donated 80 cubic yards of compost to the Delaware Center for the Inland Bays for the installation of a new event lawn at the James Farm Ecological Preserve in Ocean View. The event lawn is part of the implementation of the James Farm Master Plan, a community-developed initiative designed to protect the preserve’s diverse collection of ecosystems while safely accommodating and educating a growing number of visitors.
The compost was a critical component in completing the event lawn, which will provide an open, flexible, and easily accessible space for outdoor recreation and community events. Through a practice known as subsoiling, the center will be able to maintain lush, healthy grass without the use of synthetic fertilizers that leach excess nutrients into the bays.
“Compost is an excellent soil amendment for horticultural purposes,” said Bob Collins, Center for the Inland Bays program manager. “In addition to adding nutrients, it helps retain soil tilth and moisture, and maintains beneficial microbial populations. This will be particularly helpful at the James Farm Ecological Preserve, where sandy soils make surviving summer drought and foot traffic difficult.”
The microSTART Premium Compost provided by Perdue AgriRecycle is a new product made by converting poultry byproducts and fresh forestry products into organic fertilizers that are listed by the Organic Materials Review Institute, and meet the requirements of the USDA National Organic Program.
While there is no single solution to declining soil and water quality, microSTART Premium Compost reduces the impact of the poultry industry by providing a stable organic product that keeps nutrients from leaching and provides rich organic matter to improve soil qualities.
Because excess nitrogen and phosphorus are a major source of pollution to the Inland Bays, this compost adds the necessary nutrients in an organic, low-concentration, and slow-release form as an alternative to annual application of high-nitrogen and -phosphorus fertilizers.
The center thanks Perdue AgriRecycle for its generosity and partnership on this project. For more information, go to www.inlandbays.org or call 302-226-8105.