For most folks in the modern urban and suburban world, “spring cleaning” is just an expression without literal meaning. But I suspect the origin of the term is from farm life, where spring cleaning is a real and important event.
I spent part of today shoveling out stalls in our barn. Last week I spent hours cleaning out the chickenhouse. The bedding from the stalls goes to my compost pile, and next year will be fertilizer in our gardens. The litter from the chickenhouse (a year’s buildup of manure and bedding) goes directly into our legume rotation gardens as immediate fertilizer.
As I’ve posted before, all we’re really doing is harvesting sunlight and rain. God provides those and they provide the grass that feeds the animals that produce the manure that fertilizes the fields that produce the crops that we eat. It’s beautifully simple if we exclude the chemical companies and the USDA.
Cleaning out barn stalls and henhouses is something sustainable and traditional farmers do every Spring. The bedding and litter are integral to the fertilization of our gardens.
I won’t claim to enjoy spring cleaning. But I am grateful for it nevertheless.