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Mel's Mix. How strong is your backbone?

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Post  Goosegirl on 7/28/2012, 9:22 am

@walshevak wrote:
@toledobend wrote:I was wondering about the weight of a 4x4x6" box also. If I put a box on our concrete area (formally a basket ball court, in the future a garage) I'm going to have raise them above dog pee level (half shepard/half golden retriever). But I want to be able to move them out farther into the yard during winter for the sun (beyond the wireless fence dog collar range). The box will have Hardie Board for the "floor" with 2x6 runners on the bottom so I can tow it/them to another part of the yard. Problem is, I'll need to get them off the concrete blocks I plan to use to get them out of pee range. And then back onto the blocks in mid spring to get them some shade from our Louisiana sun. Using the .66 figure for the size of a 5 gallon bucket, I came up with 242 lbs. Was the 20 pounds per bucket dry MM?

You may need to build a ramp up to the blocks. Very Happy

Kay

Or instead of blocks you can attach 4x4 stubby posts as the raisers, with casters on the bottom so you can just roll it where you want it - as long as it is on a solid surface and can roll...

I did that with a very large 1/2 barrel several years ago - much easier to move around on wheels!

GG
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Post  toledobend on 7/28/2012, 10:33 am

The problem with wheels or casters is that I'll have to cross soft dirt to move it to the winter location (about 60 yards), that's why I am going to have runners on the bottom, though I will check out putting wheels on the bottom. I have those "seen on TV" furniture moving straps (we can lift a big old recliner couch-last weekend I helped my daughter move) so if the filled box is not too heavy, my son-in-law and I can probably get it off the blocks. How much water does anybody think will be in a 4x4x6" box?
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Post  toledobend on 10/1/2012, 12:49 pm

I filled a new box today, the first with my own compost! My new box is a 4'x4' with 7.25" tall boards. I used the five gallon bucket method to measure my compost. Each bucket hols .67 cu. ft., so I sifted the pile and put the compost in a trash can. I was curious on how the six buckets (4 c. ft.) compared to the 4 cu ft bag of vermiculite and the 2.2 cu ft bag of compressed peat moss. I marked the height of the compost in the trash can. The 4 cu ft bag of vermiculite went a litttle higher than the 4 cu ft of compost. But the uncompressed 2.2 cu ft of compressed peat moss was almost exactly as high as the compost. The Mels Mix calculator seemed to work well because I came out with about 2 cu ft of extra Mel's Mix after I filled the box.
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Post  camprn on 10/1/2012, 1:41 pm

@toledobend wrote:I came out with about 2 cu ft of extra Mel's Mix after I filled the box.
you will need to add that to the bed when the mix in the box settles.

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Post  jplee3 on 10/12/2012, 2:22 am

Hey guys, I'm new to SFG and am planning things out. I'm a bit confused as far as composts though - OPs first post includes suggestions for using various types of manures. First off, is the manure always supposed to be 'composted' out of the package? Or is it relatively fresh? I presume you just mix these in with regular compost? And is it always a good idea to let the manure sit outside in a pile for a few weeks to ensure it has fully composted? What about mulch? Same thing (just let it break down more so it becomes true compost)? TIA!
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Post  Hoggar on 10/12/2012, 2:21 pm

@toledobend wrote:The problem with wheels or casters is that I'll have to cross soft dirt to move it to the winter location (about 60 yards), that's why I am going to have runners on the bottom, though I will check out putting wheels on the bottom. I have those "seen on TV" furniture moving straps (we can lift a big old recliner couch-last weekend I helped my daughter move) so if the filled box is not too heavy, my son-in-law and I can probably get it off the blocks. How much water does anybody think will be in a 4x4x6" box?

You could use 6" wheels in your runners so when it was on solid ground it could be rolled into place after all we are talking about a couple hundred lbs of dirt water and wood.

Here is something I threw together in paint.
Mel's Mix. How strong is your backbone? - Page 7 RollerTTplanter
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Post  camprn on 10/13/2012, 9:37 am

@Hoggar wrote:
@toledobend wrote:The problem with wheels or casters is that I'll have to cross soft dirt to move it to the winter location (about 60 yards), that's why I am going to have runners on the bottom, though I will check out putting wheels on the bottom. I have those "seen on TV" furniture moving straps (we can lift a big old recliner couch-last weekend I helped my daughter move) so if the filled box is not too heavy, my son-in-law and I can probably get it off the blocks. How much water does anybody think will be in a 4x4x6" box?

You could use 6" wheels in your runners so when it was on solid ground it could be rolled into place after all we are talking about a couple hundred lbs of dirt water and wood.

Here is something I threw together in paint.
Mel's Mix. How strong is your backbone? - Page 7 RollerTTplanter
Brilliant!!!

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There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

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Post  mollyhespra on 10/13/2012, 10:14 am

@jplee3 wrote:Hey guys, I'm new to SFG and am planning things out. I'm a bit confused as far as composts though - OPs first post includes suggestions for using various types of manures. First off, is the manure always supposed to be 'composted' out of the package? Or is it relatively fresh? I presume you just mix these in with regular compost? And is it always a good idea to let the manure sit outside in a pile for a few weeks to ensure it has fully composted? What about mulch? Same thing (just let it break down more so it becomes true compost)? TIA!

Firstly, glad you\'re here jplee3!

Secondly, I'm a newbie to this SFG thing also, but from what I recall from my "regular" gardening experience (I get piles of poo from a local farmer nowadays) is that pre-bagged, commercially available manures are usually labelled if they're pre-composted or the instructions on the bag will warn you *to* compost them by placing a warning somewhere about not using too much or it will burn your plants' roots. That tells me the manure isn't "done" yet or at all, in which case I'd add it to the pile & let it cook some more. Good composted manure shouldn't burn anybody's roots, I shouldn't think.

I'm sure the more experiened folks will chime in also.
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Mel's Mix. How strong is your backbone? - Page 7 Empty Mushrooms??

Post  Cobaltkitchen on 11/8/2012, 8:35 pm

I am new to SFG, and do not have enough room in my raised beds to warrant buying 5 types of compost, so we bought the packaged Mel's Mix from Home Depot. We put this into 2 of our 3 beds (bed 1 was already planted and growing well, so we decided to compare results). The beds with the store-bought Mel's Mix have sprouted hundreds of 3 types of mushrooms over the last month. I pull them out morning and night, to try to keep them from coming back. Has anyone else had this problem? In Arizona we think of mushrooms not from the store as poisonous, so I'm concerned about them sticking to my lettuce and other greens when they die (seem to have a 24 hour life cycle). They are very small, nothing you could make a meal of even if they ARE safe... Smile
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Post  Cincinnati on 11/8/2012, 11:48 pm

@Cobaltkitchen wrote:I am new to SFG, and do not have enough room in my raised beds to warrant buying 5 types of compost, so we bought the packaged Mel's Mix from Home Depot. ... Smile

Cobalt,

I'm discovering you can't have too much compost. — even though I do make my own. You must add compost to the "used" MM at the time you replant a square. So, Having plenty on hand is essential.

I recommend getting 5 types and mixing it together, storing it in a large trash bin.

As far as the MM pre-mix allowing mushrooms to propagate, It tells me that the compost they used never heated up adequately.
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Post  Laydera on 2/8/2013, 8:09 pm

http://www.squarefootgardening.com/garden-accessories/garden-potting-soil/

I am so excited as I am building my first two beds this year and this will make it so much easier! I have waited 8 years to have my SFG back.

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Post  JackieB999 on 2/9/2013, 11:23 pm

That is very exciting! I went to order a few bags and the shipping cost is more than the mix Sad Not available to pick up in store. Bummer.
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Post  Laydera on 2/9/2013, 11:41 pm

You have it sent to your local Home Depot then pick it up from there.. no shipping costs involved..not buy it off the SFG site. let me see if I can provide the link to HD..

http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-203272590/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10053&langId=-1&keyword=potting+soil&storeId=10051#.UQlUQKX4gqY

Maybe this will help you.

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Post  JackieB999 on 2/10/2013, 1:00 am

Thanks, but it's not available for pick up Sad Maybe come spring.
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Post  Nine on 3/27/2013, 7:21 pm

I'm guessing I'm wetting the peat miss before measuring to mix
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Post  RoOsTeR on 3/27/2013, 8:11 pm

@Nine wrote:I'm guessing I'm wetting the peat miss before measuring to mix

No don't wet it before measuring, but do fluff it if you got compressed bales.

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Post  Nine on 3/28/2013, 5:28 pm

Is all of the animal manure in a single class? In other words, if I get chicken, guano, and cow does this count as 3 or 1?

Thanks, gang?
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Post  Nine on 3/28/2013, 5:52 pm

I just started reading about safety concerns and manure if it is not composted long enough. Do I need to be concerned about placing bag manure in my garden if I'm planting immediately?
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Post  camprn on 3/28/2013, 5:53 pm

@Nine wrote:Is all of the animal manure in a single class? In other words, if I get chicken, guano, and cow does this count as 3 or 1?

Thanks, gang?
It counts as three, but it is advised to try for other types or organic compost when making your blend so it is not manure heavy. But you have to do the best you can and also to consider the fact that even manure compost has other elements in it, such as bedding materials.

You will find a comparison chart here in this article.
http://www.plantea.com/manure.htm

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Post  Nine on 3/28/2013, 6:59 pm

I just read about safety concerns about manure. Do I need to worry about planting immediately if I use manure?
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Post  RoOsTeR on 3/28/2013, 7:12 pm

@Nine wrote:I just read about safety concerns about manure. Do I need to worry about planting immediately if I use manure?

What type of "safety" concerns? Make sure your manure is composted before mixing in your beds. Wash your hands/produce after harvesting or working in the garden. I can say without much hesitation, that what you produce yourself in your garden will be a lot "cleaner" than anything you can buy in a store.

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Post  jazzycat on 3/28/2013, 7:58 pm

I can't speak for Nine, but the concerns *I* have are about where it comes from. If it's coming from a cafo, it's been fed gmo corn and antibiotics and hormones, and who knows what else. I certainly don't want that kind of stuff in my garden, OR the energy that comes from a cow/chicken/whatever that's been kept in strict confinement. Can you buy manure that comes from grass fed, free range animals? And where would you find it?
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Post  RoOsTeR on 3/28/2013, 8:07 pm

Try your local farmer.

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Post  camprn on 3/28/2013, 8:09 pm

@RoOsTeR wrote:Try your local farmer.
+1

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Post  plantoid on 3/28/2013, 8:19 pm

Jazzy,
I see that concerned about animal based manures in your compost .

May I suggest that you read about " The Berkley 18 day hot composting method "
. contained in the article from Cornell University are massive lists of what can be composted , you can then make a compost yourself in 18 days without animal based manures .

How ever if you use such manures I suspect that the heat will nullify most things to a lesser degree than the pollution in the air & rain /water that the plants will breathe or consume .
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