Although it may seem odd to some people to become excited by rotted vegetable matter and manure, as gardeners, a large pile of well-rotted compost can be one of the most beautiful sights in a garden. Here at Gravetye we have three beautiful compost bays, one of which is full of the most amazing black, nutrient rich compost. This is a unique blend of garden waste, kitchen waste, chicken and horse manure. With the kitchen garden plan ready for next year we know exactly which beds will need to be fed and are looking forward to starting this process. With the closure of the hotel for the restaurant extension we will be able to start this earlier than usual as the kitchen garden will be completely empty by the New Year. In the coming weeks, weather permitting, we will start the process of moving our compost to the kitchen garden. Once in the correct place this compost will either be trench dug into the soil, for peas and beans and many of the baby vegetables, or used as a mulch, for cucurbits, fruit and roses. There can be little more satisfying to a gardener than to see a beautifully prepared bed and an empty compost bay waiting in the Winter sun for coming Spring.