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How long can I store extra Mel's Mix? Toplef10How long can I store extra Mel's Mix? 1zd3ho10

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How long can I store extra Mel's Mix? Toplef10How long can I store extra Mel's Mix? 1zd3ho10

Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.

How long can I store extra Mel's Mix? I22gcj10How long can I store extra Mel's Mix? 14dhcg10

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How long can I store extra Mel's Mix?

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Kelejan
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How long can I store extra Mel's Mix? Empty How long can I store extra Mel's Mix?

Post  jillschmill 4/28/2012, 11:41 am

I mixed enough Mel's Mix this year to fill 3 boxes, but am not going to get the third one built. How long can I store this extra mix? It's in recycled bags. Will it last until next spring?

Thanks!
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Post  givvmistamps 4/28/2012, 6:08 pm

Good question! I hope that it's storable for longer periods, since the mix I'll be making is going to be more than I need initially. I'm watching for an answer...
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Post  quiltbea 4/28/2012, 6:13 pm

I would think that as long as it's not stored out in the open where rains can wash away many of the nutrients, it would do fine in bags.

I kept some soil blocker mix safely it its bag indoors, thru to the next year and I found no difference in its production.
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Post  Kelejan 4/28/2012, 6:18 pm

You would not lose out on storing the vermiculite and peat, but you can always top up the compost part to make sure.
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Post  arla 4/28/2012, 11:08 pm

How long do you WANT to store it?

I've used some I made up around july last year, it is still fine, I do keep it in the shed, so it's kept dry, but other than that I did nothing special. I'm curious to see what happens with the compost that I just bagged, I know I have worms in there!
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Post  llama momma 4/29/2012, 2:06 am

When you use the mix next year, for extra insurance and peace of mind I might add some fresh/finished compost if it was available. You can't go wrong and you wouldn't throw off the mix.

If straight worm castings were purchased and added to the compost then it would be a concern as it loses its fertility pretty quickly if it dries out.

This past Autumn I found moist stored compost in my unheated garage several months old that still had fat earthworms and cocoons in it. The key seems to be moisture and materials for the the worms to break down. I'd say it is in great shape for growing future veggies.


Last edited by llama momma on 4/29/2012, 2:06 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : clarify)
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Post  Unmutual 4/29/2012, 7:46 am

I'd think that MM would store indefinitely. I reclaimed a lot of MM when making the permanent beds, but I did add some more compost before planting. Just be sure to soak it in layers as you put it into the new bed next year because I'm sure it will be dry.

Also, don't make the bags airtight or the compost will go anaerobic and begin to smell(even though compost is decomposed organic material, that organic matter continues to break down. In the absence of aerobic decomposition, anaerobic decomposition will kick in and unfortunately it smells really bad).
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Post  plantoid 4/29/2012, 8:48 am

Yesterday I finally used the last of six patio or glasshouse grow bags that have been in my garden in the open laid on their sides for three years . They were still quite moist inside and did not smell acidic or mouldy etc.

Like UM says prick a row of holes around the base & top of the bag so it can breathe and take in any rain that is around . They will stay fresh for a long time ..... certainly till next spring if stored outside in the shade rather than full sun..

I noticed earlier today that the various compost and manure bags in the garden center we visited did not have a best before or use by date on them .
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Post  givvmistamps 4/29/2012, 2:36 pm

@plantoid wrote:*snip*
I noticed earlier today that the various compost and manure bags in the garden center we visited did not have a best before or use by date on them .

That's a good point! I wonder if worm castings have a best before date? I guess I'll find out in a few days... What a Face
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