Last spring, we made massive piles of the animal bedding (mostly spent organic hay and sheep dung) and left the piles to mature over the summer and winter. A few squashes grew in the manner, but still nothing on the ground. Over the year, the chickens and ducks worked hard to take apart the piles, and it didn't take much to finish the job this spring and till the manure into the dirt.
We spread a mixture of pasture grass and clover seed and lightly raked it in.
So far, it's growing!
But not well as the blades of grass are thin compared to healthy soil. But we finally have signs of life!
Not sure what we are going to do with it from here on. I'm the only one in the family that still consumes gluten so we would need to rethink the grain experiment. I would still like to do some no-till experiments on this area but I don't think the soil is recovered enough yet. Probably this year, we'll treat it like lawn, then maybe this fall pile the manure on it again.