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I'm ready to fill...IF ????? Toplef10I'm ready to fill...IF ????? 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.

I'm ready to fill...IF ????? I22gcj10I'm ready to fill...IF ????? 14dhcg10

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Post  jimmy cee 3/10/2013, 9:01 am

Ready to fill if I am able to circumvent a little on the compost.
I have 2 large piles of compost going now, however they wont be ready for a while.
I have plants under lights hollering to me that they need to go out.
Have vermiculite, peat moss, and cow manure compost, and mushroom manure left over from last year.
There seems to be no other way for me to pick up other types of compost..
Is there a way I can use these items I have now ? maybe add some bone meal, blood meal, etc just to get me started till my compost is ready ??
Lettuce, spinach, broccoli, kohlrabi, their all ready to go
Any advice will be appreciated
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Post  Tris 3/10/2013, 9:56 am

If there is no way to get other composts, what else are you going to do?
It took some hunting for me but I was able to drive within 30 minutes and find cow, chicken, mushroom and humas, and while I know it's not the perfect Mel's Mix, it's what I can do. Smile I doubt Mel would be like, NO DON'T GARDEN UNLESS ITS PERFECT! Laughing
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Post  landarch 3/10/2013, 10:53 am

when I was short of compost good compost thefirst year, I had to use the best I could find and supplement with organic fertilizer (compost tea with mycorhizae, fish emulsion, and chickity doo-doo) throughout the growing season. My home compost piles were ready for the fall garden...it just takes a bit of time to sync your garden to your compost piles.
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Post  llama momma 3/10/2013, 11:39 am

If you did the 18 day Berkeley hot composting method would that be soon enough for your needs? You can google the directions. Plantoid has mentioned his experience with it. I'm going to give a try here myself in the next few days to speed up some compost. Apparently the method not only is fast but the volume of material hardly changes. That alone impresssed me. I have grape pomace and the material is suppose to be harder to break down so I'm hoping this method will take care of it and provide fast compost.


Last edited by llama momma on 3/10/2013, 11:56 am; edited 1 time in total
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Post  RoOsTeR 3/10/2013, 11:53 am

jimmy cee wrote:Ready to fill if I am able to circumvent a little on the compost.
I have 2 large piles of compost going now, however they wont be ready for a while.
I have plants under lights hollering to me that they need to go out.
Have vermiculite, peat moss, and cow manure compost, and mushroom manure left over from last year.
There seems to be no other way for me to pick up other types of compost..
Is there a way I can use these items I have now ? maybe add some bone meal, blood meal, etc just to get me started till my compost is ready ??
Lettuce, spinach, broccoli, kohlrabi, their all ready to go
Any advice will be appreciated

Jimmy, if you're really looking for advice I would either wait, or find the 5 composts required of Mel's Mix. I know some folks get tired of hearing it, but the method is pretty specific and proven provided you follow it. Compost is the single most important ingredient for your new garden and skimping on compost in an intensive gardening method like Mel has given us, could lead to failures. The compost is the backbone of your entire garden and Mel's advice in the book is pretty specific. "Don't Skimp On This".

Here is a great thread with lots of great information on compost:
https://squarefoot.forumotion.com/t7452-mel-s-mix-how-strong-is-your-backbone
Is there any way you can scrounge enough "ready" compost perhaps from the bottom of your piles to get the plants going that need to be planted now?

LM, that's a great alternative as well to possibly get things moving along.


Last edited by RoOsTeR on 3/10/2013, 2:36 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post  Turan 3/10/2013, 1:42 pm

You seem to recognize that you will need to compensate. I would add some kelp meal, which is widely available in organic fertilizer mixtures and on its own. You might consider using lawn clippings as a mulch, they degrade quickly and become a compost top dressing. Then as you have compost available use it to top dress around your plants.

Happy growing Smile

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Post  llama momma 3/10/2013, 2:33 pm

Rooster-- you recommended the wrong site I believe, recheck your last post above.
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Post  RoOsTeR 3/10/2013, 2:37 pm

Haha. Repaired Very Happy gracias

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Post  llama momma 3/10/2013, 2:43 pm

happy sunshine you're welcome
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Post  jimmy cee 3/11/2013, 5:11 pm

Ok came across some horse manure today.
Placed in a pile last August, very few clumps and lots of fines, Told me it was steaming a while back.
This along with mushroom manure, cow manure, and what ever I can screen from my compost pile should do it... Right...?????.... Very Happy
I'll tell you folks, if this is supposed to make things easy I sure hope so.
I had to carry ten 5 gal buckets up from a barn today, couldn't get car down in it...
Building compost bins, rebuilding raised beds, driving every where to find stuff I'm ready to fill...IF ????? 3170584802
I think I'll have a beer..
By the way, found a mountain of horse manure that's been there for years, just cant get to it....LOL
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Post  bnoles 3/11/2013, 5:41 pm

Hi Jimmy,

I know what you mean about all the hard work getting things set up, as I have been at it since fall and now it is planting time. I think I can see daylight and yes, it should be much easier from here out..... well, that is unless/until I decide to add more beds rofl I'm ready to fill...IF ????? 3170584802
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Post  victoria 3/11/2013, 7:28 pm

Please please please -listen to Rooster and Mel - Do NOT skimp on the compost aspect of Mel's Mix - or any of it - here is why - if you dont get a well rounded mixture of compost to balance each other out - your garden will fail. It may produce - or it may stunt - or yellow - or fall fatally short of your expectations. I read email all day long and the number one reason gardens fail always has to do with the Soil. Mel's Mix has already been 'dummied' down - so when you remove any portion of it - the recipe fails - think of making bread - and leaving out the yeast - but using everything else -

Here is my advice - pick up the phone book - or google - and look for nurseries - hardware stores - tack and feed stores - We have worm compost we can ship from the store - even look on craigslist. Go to walmart and read the compost bags and see what ingredients they have - or go to the home depot website and order a few bags of actual mel's mix and have it shipped to your local store. Every bag of compost is made different - you may get lucky and hit the jack pot!
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Post  camprn 3/11/2013, 8:10 pm

Jimmy, I found some compost listed on your area Craig's list.
http://pittsburgh.craigslist.org/search/gra?zoomToPosting=&query=compost&srchType=A&minAsk=&maxAsk=

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Post  jimmy cee 3/11/2013, 9:20 pm

Victoria
After all I've been doing for the past 4 months I'm not about to skimp.
Realizing the value of those who have gone on before, I am going to wait, even if
I must wait till my compost bins are ready.
I've done the phone book, internet, Craigs List, word of mouth, feed and supply shops, etc etc.
Now getting ready to check on chicken farms, and out of town.
A few weeks ago I opened up my compost pile, it wasn't hot, however about the finest fragrance I've had in a very long time.
Just like a cool rain on a warm spring day
Victoria..is that a sunflower in your hands ?

Camprn
Thanks for the Craigs List links, I've been keeping track of it also, nothing local as of now.
The Pittsburgh area is quite large, I don't have a pick up, everything I haul is inside a station wagon (5gal buckets)..I think I should have named myself that on this site....5galbucket...LOL
I may need to pay for hauling, however that will be a last resort...


Last edited by jimmy cee on 3/11/2013, 9:33 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : change)
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Post  Tris 3/11/2013, 9:22 pm

camprn wrote:Jimmy, I found some compost listed on your area Craig's list.
http://pittsburgh.craigslist.org/search/gra?zoomToPosting=&query=compost&srchType=A&minAsk=&maxAsk=
A quick google maps showed that most of those ( I didn't check all) are nearly 2 hours away.
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Post  Tris 3/11/2013, 9:24 pm

Jimmy is there a Home Depot near you? You may be able to order Mel's Mix, which can supplement what you have.
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Post  camprn 3/11/2013, 9:30 pm

Tris wrote:Jimmy is there a Home Depot near you? You may be able to order Mel's Mix, which can supplement what you have.
A good idea, however that won't help the lack of 5 different composts.

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Post  jimmy cee 3/11/2013, 9:37 pm

Yep, a great place to live, Indiana PA. but everything is 2 hours away..
We need to travel for 2 hours before we start going anywhere...LOL
I wouldn't trade it for any other location...welll......(maybe the Smokies)
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Post  Tris 3/11/2013, 9:53 pm

camprn wrote:
Tris wrote:Jimmy is there a Home Depot near you? You may be able to order Mel's Mix, which can supplement what you have.
A good idea, however that won't help the lack of 5 different composts.
If he uses Mel's mix he won't need different composts, according to Mel's blog.
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Post  Tris 3/11/2013, 9:55 pm

jimmy cee wrote:Yep, a great place to live, Indiana PA. but everything is 2 hours away..
We need to travel for 2 hours before we start going anywhere...LOL
I wouldn't trade it for any other location...welll......(maybe the Smokies)
That's similar to where I live, I did fortunately find a little bit 30 minutes away, but honestly traveling all over hours away to find multiple composts isn't really an option and you won't find really anyone here who understands that.
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Post  camprn 3/11/2013, 9:56 pm

Tris wrote:
camprn wrote:
Tris wrote:Jimmy is there a Home Depot near you? You may be able to order Mel's Mix, which can supplement what you have.
A good idea, however that won't help the lack of 5 different composts.
If he uses Mel's mix he won't need different composts, according to Mel's blog.
He will need more of the blended (5 composts) because of the amount of peat and vermiculite he already has. I don't recall anywhere in his blog where Mel says you don't need at least the 5 different composts to make the blend.

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Post  Tris 3/11/2013, 10:02 pm

camprn wrote:
Tris wrote:
camprn wrote:
Tris wrote:Jimmy is there a Home Depot near you? You may be able to order Mel's Mix, which can supplement what you have.
A good idea, however that won't help the lack of 5 different composts.
If he uses Mel's mix he won't need different composts, according to Mel's blog.
He will need more of the blended (5 composts) because of the amount of peat and vermiculite he already has. I don't recall anywhere in his blog where Mel says you don't need at least the 5 different composts to make the blend.
http://www.melbartholomew.com/here-is-where-you-can-find-mels-mix/
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Post  camprn 3/11/2013, 10:06 pm

I don't understand the link. Even if he acquires more MM he will still need to finish the batch he already started. Hang in there Jimmy. Maybe some of the local 4-H kids raise bunnies.

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Post  audrey.jeanne.roberts 3/11/2013, 10:47 pm

I just tried to order MM to my local store. It's a new program and not all stores have the option available. None of my 9 store within 50 miles had the option. *deep sigh*

I was sooooo hoping this was going to be possible.

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Post  Tris 3/11/2013, 11:18 pm

audrey.jeanne.roberts wrote:I just tried to order MM to my local store. It's a new program and not all stores have the option available. None of my 9 store within 50 miles had the option. *deep sigh*

I was sooooo hoping this was going to be possible.

Not all the stores have the ship to store option, but you can ask the manager of the local gardening department and he can order it for you Very Happy
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