Square Foot Gardening Forum
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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.

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Post  vmculp on 4/29/2012, 1:02 pm

How do I convert weight of compost to cu feet?
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Post  camprn on 4/29/2012, 1:09 pm

There is not a standard for conversion because of variables, things like moisture content. If you are buying it by the bag, there may be an indication of volume printed on the bag. For home made compost I use a bucket for measuring.

Welcome to the forum vmculp! Compost 61949

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Post  UnderTheBlackWalnut on 4/29/2012, 2:33 pm

Camp is right on! Compost 3170584802 If I get desperate and I need to buy compost that isn't labeled by volume, I'll figure a 40 lb bag for about .75 cu ft. THIS IS ONLY A GUIDE FOR PURCHASE to give you a ROUGH idea of how many bags to buy.

When you mix, you'll want to be sure to use one container (some folks use a 5 gallon bucket, others something larger or smaller) and mix equal parts of your composts together by volume. (For example, 1 bucket of compost A, 1 bucket of compost B, 1 bucket of compost C, 1 bucket of compost D, 1 bucket of compost E. Mix well. Then add 5 buckets of vermiculite and 5 buckets of fluffed peat - make sure it's all mixed well. Alternatively, once you get the five equal amounts of composts mixed together, you can just pull a bucket of that mixed blend out and mix it with a bucket of vermiculite and a bucket of fluffed peat if you don't like working with large volumes.)
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Post  vmculp on 4/29/2012, 2:48 pm

Thanks for the info on measuring compost.
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Post  UnderTheBlackWalnut on 4/29/2012, 2:50 pm

Welcome vmculp! Smile Is this your first SFG? Do you have the All New Square Foot Gardening book? It does a great job of spelling out how to get started...

Keep us posted on your progress. We love pics! Smile
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Post  vmculp on 4/29/2012, 3:00 pm

Yes, this is my 1st SFG experience. I have 6 4X4s set up, and my husband and I are just doing the mixing. The book is great but was looking for an easy way to measure non-marked bags.
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Post  mrwes40 on 4/29/2012, 4:48 pm

@vmculp wrote:Yes, this is my 1st SFG experience. I have 6 4X4s set up, and my husband and I are just doing the mixing. The book is great but was looking for an easy way to measure non-marked bags.

I just used an old 5 gallon plastic bucket = ~ 2/3 cubic foot.
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Post  plantoid on 4/29/2012, 5:36 pm

Hello VM ,

Welcome to the site , are you in posession of Mel Bartholomew's 2006 edition of the All New Square Foot Gardening book , if so have you read it ??

If not there is a description of how to mix the blended Mel's Mix ( MM) using a tarpaulin .



Because of ease most folks are saying from experience use a bucket to measure out the composts/manures on their own so you can get them well and truly blended and loosened up before making up the full formula of MM.



Then add a bucket of peat to , a bucket of vermiculite and a bucket of the mixed up well blended composts/manures to the tarp or mixer or wheel barrow etc and thoroughly mix them up .

lay it in the beds in 4 inch layers and only then water it well in each layer when it is in the beds rahter than watering it as you mix , for it will be very heavy hard work if you do try mixing wet materials .

If your doing big amounts then obviously you have the choice of using the tarp and getting as much as you can handle in one go with the tarp method or if your weedy and puny Wink like me you can mix it up in many many wheel barrow loads over a much longer time.
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Post  gregrenee88 on 4/29/2012, 7:22 pm

@plantoid wrote:Hello VM ,

Welcome to the site , are you in posession of Mel Bartholomew's 2006 edition of the All New Square Foot Gardening book , if so have you read it ??

If not there is a description of how to mix the blended Mel's Mix ( MM) using a tarpaulin .



Because of ease most folks are saying from experience use a bucket to measure out the composts/manures on their own so you can get them well and truly blended and loosened up before making up the full formula of MM.



Then add a bucket of peat to , a bucket of vermiculite and a bucket of the mixed up well blended composts/manures to the tarp or mixer or wheel barrow etc and thoroughly mix them up .

lay it in the beds in 4 inch layers and only then water it well in each layer when it is in the beds rahter than watering it as you mix , for it will be very heavy hard work if you do try mixing wet materials .

If your doing big amounts then obviously you have the choice of using the tarp and getting as much as you can handle in one go with the tarp method or if your weedy and puny Wink like me you can mix it up in many many wheel barrow loads over a much longer time.


We used the bed of our Ford Ranger (enough for 3 beds) and watered it down frequently while mixing.
Renee Wink
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Post  vmculp on 5/7/2012, 9:38 pm

Thanks for the replies on measuring the mix. We could not find locally the bag Mel uses that is organic humus. Is there a good substitute for that?
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