Smells like sh*t!
Summer bring lots of great smells, barbecues, freshly cut grass, 2-stroke on the lake... and manure. And we've got heaps of it! We've been able to source some really well composted cow manure lately and it's got people talking. There's heaps you can do with good sh*t but throw some good, composted cow manure around and you could have a thriving back yard. Cow manure generally doesn't have as much available nitrogen as commercial chemical fertilizers, but it makes a fine slow-release fertilizer for use on a range of plants - from rose bushes and flowers to bean plants and squashes.
While it is generally more sloppy and difficult to handle than horse manure when fresh, cow manure can be composted into a relatively nutrient-rich material. Once applied, the fertilizer manure should be worked into the top 6 to 9 inches of the soil to ensure the nutrients mix well with the soil. Well-rotted and composted cow manure can go onto the ground in spring.
Cow manure can be used more directly to fertilize individual plants. A scoop of cow manure inserted into the base of a potting hole for squash or pumpkins, for example, gives them a nutritional boost for growing. You can also use cow manure spread around the base of established plants, particularly in sandy or nutrient-poor soils. This won't have as immediate an impact as chemical fertilizer, but will provide nutrients over a longer period of time.