A Garden Full of Fantastic Elephant Dung Compost

sanctuary garden

We’ve been working hard on our garden for the past few weeks. Our two rescue goats (Sally & Jorgie) usually spend some time there, but two goats are no match for the growth that comes with the rainy season. The garden was getting pretty overrun with weeds and starting to look neglected. The team spent a few days pulling weeds, and then we hauled a few truckloads of compost up the hill.

Elephant dung is a fantastic compost – one of the best. Elephants digest less than half of what they eat, which is why they consume so much each day. This inefficient digestion also means that their dung is full of partially digested bark, hay, grass, fruit, and veggies – which is exactly what a garden needs. We mixed in all the compost, and this is what it looks like now.

We haven’t started planting yet – we are going to let the elephant compost settle, and then till it once more before planting. We will be planting melons, tomatoes, greens, pumpkins, squash, and some beans this year. We will primarily use the food to feed the animals – the elephants, but also the goats, tapirs, chickens, and whatever other furry or feathered friends join our menagerie in the next few months.

May 2, 2020


  1. REPLY
    Heidi says

    Beautiful! Truly organic!

  2. REPLY
    Sheila says

    Oh how nice‼️great maybe its going to be a bumper crop of of ?, pumpkins, squash?watermelons ?for the ladies‼️ I’ll bet your garden will be excellent with elephants dung! Wish I had some for my plant pots to see how flowers would grow in dung!! Good luck keeping birds and goats out of the garden! Please keep us updated?

  3. REPLY
    Julie says

    What a lovely little perfect place on earth. Good attracts good, so I’m sure there are more furry and feathered friends to come. As Sheila said, “please keep us updated ?!”

  4. REPLY
    Sherry says

    Smart, grow your own food and enjoy the fruits of your labor!

  5. REPLY
    Lila says

    Dream life…

  6. REPLY
    Sallie Robbins-Druian says

    Wowsers! Way to go in spreading the wealth! Bravo!

  7. REPLY
    Maggie says

    Hope your garden thrives! But I got a question for you, if you don’t mind. Y’all have said your girls love fruit loops. How do you discover that elephants like fruit loops? Do you just toss them in their mouth by the handful, or give them a bucket and let them snack? Do they like other human breakfast cereals? If you are hunting for a topic for your blog, would you give us the story about elephants and fruit loops please!

    • REPLY
      EleComposer says

      Elephants have a tendency to like sweet things. Different trainers use different jackpot rewards, but generally they go towards something sweet. Jelly beans are also a common thing. What trainers are looking for is something small because if the elephant does really well a couple of times during the session, you don’t want to be overloading them with sugar. The majority of the time you use fruits and vegetables, the froot loops are just something a little extra to use.

      No, we don’t put stuff directly in their mouth – generally we put stuff in their nose. That way they can smell it and decide if they want to stick it in their mouth or throw it on the ground which is what they do if they aren’t really interested in what you’re giving them..

      As far as whether or not they like other cereals, too, – I’m sure we could probably offer them Frosted Flakes, or other sugary cereals. Cheerios have also been used. Froot Loops are not the only way to go, but because Froot Loops smell fruity, they do have a tendency to work. Also, the cereal aisle is very limited in Brazil – but they do have Froot Loops. 😉

  8. REPLY
    Rosie P says

    A great re-cycling unit! Dung to crops to dung to crops. Amazing!!!!!! And the circle of life goes on!

  9. REPLY
    carey says

    Very best of luck with it, I look forward to you having a bumper harvest, and do please post some photos of what the plot looks like in full growth!

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