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3.8 cubic ft. bale of compressed peat moss Toplef103.8 cubic ft. bale of compressed peat moss 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.

3.8 cubic ft. bale of compressed peat moss I22gcj103.8 cubic ft. bale of compressed peat moss 14dhcg10

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3.8 cubic ft. bale of compressed peat moss

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Post  68carguy 2/25/2014, 5:55 pm

What does a 3.8 cu. ft. bale of compressed peat moss expand to when opened? Does it double in size after being fluffed up? I am trying to figure how much I need for a 4' x 8' by 8 " bed. Thanks!!
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Post  boffer 2/25/2014, 8:34 pm

Yes sir, just plan on it doubling. Precision not required.  3.8 cubic ft. bale of compressed peat moss 3170584802 
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Post  walshevak 2/26/2014, 3:54 am

I counted it as 8 cu ft fluffed.  So sue me for the slight difference.  My veggies grew great.  First batch I mixed on my tarp was 60 cu ft and I used 2 of these plus one 2 cu ft bale.

Kay

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Post  rabbithutch 2/26/2014, 9:00 am

So . . .

Does that mean, then, that I should not use the package number in planning my MM?

I calculated what I would need by using the inside dimensions of my beds all added together.  It comes to about 45 cu.ft.  I then divided that number by 3 to determine how many cu.ft. of peat, vermiculite and compost I would need.  By that measure, I would need 5 bales of peat at 3 cu.ft. each.  Is that too much peat?  Will the expansion of a broken bale mean that I will need less?

I have 6 bags of vermiculite at 4 cu.ft. each arriving tomorrow.  I bought extra because it is sometimes hard to find around here and I wanted to have some on hand.

Does all this mean I should plan on more beds?   lol!
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Post  boffer 2/26/2014, 10:06 am

1. yes
2. yes
3. yes
4. definitely yes!  Razz
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Post  rabbithutch 2/26/2014, 10:28 am

Thanks, Boffer!

 3.8 cubic ft. bale of compressed peat moss 3170584802
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Post  meatburner 2/26/2014, 11:40 am

Rabbit, if I am calculating right and you have need a total of 45 cu ft of mix, then 1/3 is 15 cu ft of each of the three ingredience.  So 2 3.8 bales fluffed would give you 16 cu ft (close enough), 4 bags of vermiculite would be 16 cu ft, and then pre-mix 16 cu ft of the compost ingredience.  So, 2 bags of peat, 4 bags of vermiculite, and 16 cu ft of compose will fill what you need and have a little left over to top the beds as they settle.  Someone correct me if I am wrong here.
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Post  rabbithutch 2/26/2014, 3:40 pm

@meatburner wrote:Rabbit, if I am calculating right and you have need a total of 45 cu ft of mix, then 1/3 is 15 cu ft of each of the three ingredience.  So 2 3.8 bales fluffed would give you 16 cu ft (close enough), 4 bags of vermiculite would be 16 cu ft, and then pre-mix 16 cu ft of the compost ingredience.  So, 2 bags of peat, 4 bags of vermiculite, and 16 cu ft of compose will fill what you need and have a little left over to top the beds as they settle.  Someone correct me if I am wrong here.

Thanks, meatburner! 

That is exactly the information I needed!

I foolishly used the compressed volume of peat bales in my calculations.  Embarassed   I should have known better but wasn't thinking.  I bought 4 bales (3 cu.ft. each) of peat and 6 bags (4 cu.ft. each) of vermiculite; so I will have plenty of those components with some left over (unless I decide to expand my plans  Rolling Eyes  )

For compost, I have maybe 6-8 bucketfuls (5-gal.) - maybe 3-4 cu.ft. of yard waste that I've piled up over the years.  That is only about 40% of the volume I'll need; so I bought three 50 lb. bags of Black Cow compost, too.  This weekend I hope to get a drum full of rotted sheep manure which will be about 6-7 cu.ft.  I might be able to get some rabbit manure, too.  If the fellow is still raising rabbits, I might get some worm castings from him as well.

What else would you recommend I search for to complete my compost additions?

Thanks again for straightening me out.
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Post  meatburner 2/26/2014, 4:21 pm

rabbit, if you get the manure and worm castings you are getting pretty close.  One more bag of something like mushroom compose should be easy to find and a nice addition to what you may have.  If you have enough equal parts of what you listed for the compose portion, you wouldn't even need the mushroom compose.  Hope you have a nice enough weekend to get it put together.  It's pretty exciting stuff ! 3.8 cubic ft. bale of compressed peat moss 3170584802
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Post  walshevak 2/26/2014, 7:30 pm

Folks, this is not baking a cake.  The ingredients can be a smidge off.  The only place not to skimp is compost.  I sometime throw in an extra bag of Black Hen (cause it is only 20 lbs) just to make up what might be a short bag or two of some of the others or because my homemade is shy of manures.  (I know, it is labeled fertilizer, but it is composted chicken manure,)  Same with Chickety DOO DOO I'll bet.

Kay

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Post  sanderson 2/26/2014, 8:57 pm

Rabbit, Didn't you post all of your ingredients somewhere else? I thought you had mushroom compost, sea kelp and worm castings, also. Or am I confusing you with someone else? Are you getting heavy on the percentage of manures? I ask because I think I read somewhere that too much nitrogen will give lots of beautiful greenery but not much fruits.
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Post  rabbithutch 2/27/2014, 2:46 pm

@sanderson wrote:Rabbit,  Didn't you post all of your ingredients somewhere else?  I thought you had mushroom compost, sea kelp and worm castings, also.  Or am I confusing you with someone else?  Are you getting heavy on the percentage of manures?  I ask because I think I read somewhere that too much nitrogen will give lots of beautiful greenery but not much fruits.  

Alas, it was not I.  I have no access to mushroom compost or sea kelp but might find some worm castings this weekend (I have a lead).

I have no idea whether or not I'm overdoing the manures as this is my first attempt at MM.  I've read and re-read ANSFG but I do not have access to all the goodies suggested.  I'm just trying to 'make do' with what I can find.

I really appreciate any advice I can get in this area.
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Post  camprn 2/27/2014, 2:57 pm

Personally I wouldn't worry too much about an overabundance of 'maunure' composts in a new garden. Mostly because those composts are often made from a variety of matter and not just poo.

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Post  boffer 2/27/2014, 4:46 pm

@rabbithutch wrote:...I have no idea whether or not I'm overdoing the manures as this is my first attempt at MM.  ... I really appreciate any advice I can get in this area.

I need manures to get the volume of 5 way compost that I want. In order to keep things simple and easy for a simple and lazy gardener, my mix is 50% plants and 50% manures. My manures include horse, cow, and chicken.

I calculated the C:N ratio one time, and it was about 35:1. I believe optimal is 30:1. That's plenty close enough for me, and I'm happy with my harvests.
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