I filled raised beds 3 and 4 today because it it supposed to rain and snow for the next two days. The moisture will get the composting started.
As you can see, the bottom layer is getting larger pieces of deadwood, as have all 4 raised beds. Any amount will do. I stopped here to push leaves and compost underneath the raised portions. I added more wood before moving to the second layer.
I covered the base wood with 6 bags of fresh, dry compost.
To complete my initial fill, I put a couple pieces of dead sod I got free last year from a nursery. It is high in clay, a good addition to each bed. Clay holds water and has minerals and nutrients for the plants. These layers will compact down to about 12 inches, and the clay will dissolve into the bottom foot. After it rains and snows over the next two days, and these layers are moist, I will shovel my soil in to cover and hold the moisture in.
The extra 3 bags of compost went on top of the smaller wood pieces in raised bed 3. After this round of rain and snow, I will add sod pieces with more clay, and fill with my native soil. It will be plantable with annuals by May, and twice as rich next year when I top them off and add a few perennials.
These are not rules for composting, they just show me using what I have available to create rich raised beds. Add any composting materials to a new bed and it will improve your soil.
I am pleased raised beds 3 and 4 are another step forward and hope I get