Square Foot Gardening Forum

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.


Search
 
 

Display results as :
 

 


Rechercher Advanced Search

Latest topics
» What are you eating from your garden today?
by countrynaturals Today at 5:01 pm

» Ground Cherries
by countrynaturals Today at 4:58 pm

» New England March 2017
by CapeCoddess Today at 3:19 pm

» New from OK City
by phoeg Today at 2:50 pm

» CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in March 2017
by CapeCoddess Today at 12:32 pm

» Butterfly Junction
by countrynaturals Today at 11:56 am

» Squares under siege... by grass!
by has55 Today at 7:38 am

» Tomato Mystery Mix
by Avinash Today at 12:06 am

» How's the Weather Where You're At?
by TCgardening Yesterday at 9:46 pm

» New to SFG!
by TCgardening Yesterday at 9:39 pm

» N & C Midwest: March 2017 Brink of Spring
by CitizenKate Yesterday at 9:12 pm

» North Texas - Square Foot Garden
by Scorpio Rising Yesterday at 8:34 pm

» How can we save this tree?
by countrynaturals Yesterday at 2:30 pm

» Terrible News: Bumblebees In Trouble
by countrynaturals Yesterday at 1:18 pm

» Ontario - trying out SFG
by Kelejan Yesterday at 12:39 pm

» List of Forum Members with Blogs
by Cajun Cappy Yesterday at 12:31 pm

» SUGA 2017
by SQWIB Yesterday at 9:26 am

» Happy Birthday!!
by AtlantaMarie Yesterday at 8:42 am

» who has chickens
by sanderson 3/21/2017, 3:00 pm

» Rolling Boxes
by sanderson 3/21/2017, 2:50 pm

» Bok Choy
by Scorpio Rising 3/20/2017, 7:16 pm

» 2017 SFG in Brooks, Ga
by countrynaturals 3/20/2017, 11:53 am

» Need Plant Chart for Nighttime Lows
by Judy McConnell 3/20/2017, 10:55 am

» Collecting Rain Water - Come on Rain!
by newbeone 3/20/2017, 3:39 am

» Did I kill my strawberry plants
by bigdogrock 3/19/2017, 8:45 pm

» Carrot Week 2017!
by Turan 3/19/2017, 6:05 pm

» Gift Amaryllis
by countrynaturals 3/19/2017, 12:48 pm

» question about Garlic and winter
by GWN 3/19/2017, 10:41 am

» has55's R & D Journey:expanding my SFG to front yard
by AtlantaMarie 3/19/2017, 9:56 am

» Northern California & Coastal Valleys - What are you doing this month?
by sanderson 3/19/2017, 12:35 am

Google

Search SFG Forum

Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

Post  sfg4uKim on 3/13/2012, 1:15 am

This photo is from my friends at Veteran Compost. This is why we stress how important it is to use FIVE different types of compost and NOT be stubborn and use your existing soil. This is ALSO why we get so excited about worm poop!



From left to right: vermicompost, their regular compost, topsoil


Last edited by UnderTheBlackWalnut on 3/13/2012, 8:15 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Fixed link :))

____________________________

I have seen women looking at jewelry ads with a misty eye and one hand resting on the heart, and I only know what they're feeling because that's how I read the seed catalogs in January - Barbara Kingsolver - Animal, Vegetable, Miracle


sfg4u.com
FB: Square Foot Gardening 4 U



avatar
sfg4uKim

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 1912
Join date : 2010-09-30
Age : 58
Location : Glen Burnie, MD

View user profile http://sfg4u.com

Back to top Go down

Re: Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

Post  TN_GARDENER on 3/13/2012, 7:16 am

I wish they would have also used aged manure in their test and/or Mel's mix.

Vermicompost is nice, but rather pricey. Aged manure is often free.

I know you can make vermicompost, but doing so really does require some effort (I had a bad experience with the worms).

TN_GARDENER

Posts : 228
Join date : 2011-06-16
Location : TN

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

Post  llama momma on 3/13/2012, 7:54 am

My old computer makes pictures darker than normal - I can't tell if the middle pot or the left pot had the better result. (?)
avatar
llama momma

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 4710
Join date : 2010-08-20
Age : 60
Location : Central Ohio zone 6a

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

Post  sfg4uKim on 3/13/2012, 7:56 am

Veteran Compost no longer accepts manure as they feel the chemicals in the feed don't break down quickly enough. Because they use blowers, they produce finished compost in 90 days - not long enough to break down some of the chemicals they are trying to avoid. This is also why they stopped accepting lawn clippings.

They also don't make Mel's Mix - I'm negotiating with them, but they don't have a bagger yet as it's still a relatively "small" operation. Justen will be renting a bagger during the off season and he will bag my version of MM for me then.

If I had known about their experiment, I certainly would have offered them some to use. Maybe next year.

____________________________

I have seen women looking at jewelry ads with a misty eye and one hand resting on the heart, and I only know what they're feeling because that's how I read the seed catalogs in January - Barbara Kingsolver - Animal, Vegetable, Miracle


sfg4u.com
FB: Square Foot Gardening 4 U



avatar
sfg4uKim

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 1912
Join date : 2010-09-30
Age : 58
Location : Glen Burnie, MD

View user profile http://sfg4u.com

Back to top Go down

Re: Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

Post  sfg4uKim on 3/13/2012, 8:02 am

@llama momma wrote:My old computer makes pictures darker than normal - I can't tell if the middle pot or the left pot had the better result. (?)

When I blow up the photo and use a tape measure I get these approximate results:
Vermicompost = 2 7/8"
Compost = 1 7/8"
Top Soil = 1 3/8"

____________________________

I have seen women looking at jewelry ads with a misty eye and one hand resting on the heart, and I only know what they're feeling because that's how I read the seed catalogs in January - Barbara Kingsolver - Animal, Vegetable, Miracle


sfg4u.com
FB: Square Foot Gardening 4 U



avatar
sfg4uKim

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 1912
Join date : 2010-09-30
Age : 58
Location : Glen Burnie, MD

View user profile http://sfg4u.com

Back to top Go down

Re: Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

Post  llama momma on 3/13/2012, 8:12 am

Wow, thank you for your detailed effort!
My compost book says plants "seldom grow well" in 50 - 100% vermicompost. "Tends to be somewhat high in salts." Supposedly the "ideal balance is 15-20% vermicompost to 80-85% potting soil." Even though the book makes a contradition to your picture results, I am guessing either that particular plant didn't mind, or the particular vermicompost was lower in salts than usual? thinking
avatar
llama momma

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 4710
Join date : 2010-08-20
Age : 60
Location : Central Ohio zone 6a

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

Post  littlejo on 3/13/2012, 8:53 am

@sfg4uKim wrote:Veteran Compost no longer accepts manure as they feel the chemicals in the feed don't break down quickly enough. Because they use blowers, they produce finished compost in 90 days - not long enough to break down some of the chemicals they are trying to avoid. This is also why they stopped accepting lawn clippings.

They also don't make Mel's Mix - I'm negotiating with them, but they don't have a bagger yet as it's still a relatively "small" operation. Justen will be renting a bagger during the off season and he will bag my version of MM for me then.

If I had known about their experiment, I certainly would have offered them some to use. Maybe next year.

I couldn't get the link to work, takes me to the SFG home page, maybe not supposed to?

If they don't use manure and the don't use yard waste, what do they put in their compost?

I make compost using some manure and yard trimmings, and some veggie peelings(from my kitchen, if the worms don't eat them). I use a tumbler and it never takes 90 days.

I would agree, if you could have enough worms to make straight worm poo to plant in, it would probably beat out MM, but, it would take a heck of a lot of worms!

I planted 1 African Violet in straight worm poo, and it is the most beautiful, blooms constantly.

Jo
avatar
littlejo

Female Posts : 1532
Join date : 2011-05-04
Age : 63
Location : Cottageville SC 8b

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

Post  sfg4uKim on 3/13/2012, 11:53 am

They use food waste, wood too small to be used as mulch, paper, leaves. The same stuff you'd use in your home compost pile which Mel says is the best way to go. They test it in-house and send out samples all the time to make sure it's balanced.

I'm on my phone so I can't correct the link but if you just plug in veterancompost.com you'll find them. I had the same problem with it taking me to the SFG web site too awhile back.

____________________________

I have seen women looking at jewelry ads with a misty eye and one hand resting on the heart, and I only know what they're feeling because that's how I read the seed catalogs in January - Barbara Kingsolver - Animal, Vegetable, Miracle


sfg4u.com
FB: Square Foot Gardening 4 U



avatar
sfg4uKim

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 1912
Join date : 2010-09-30
Age : 58
Location : Glen Burnie, MD

View user profile http://sfg4u.com

Back to top Go down

Re: Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

Post  AvaDGardner on 3/21/2012, 1:25 pm

THAT is an AWESOME picture!

Nurserys tell me over and over to 'only add a bit' of castings to the soil, because 'they could cause N burn.'

Okay...so maybe the allium family wouldn't like it.

But WOW! Thanks!
avatar
AvaDGardner

Female Posts : 631
Join date : 2012-02-17
Location : Garden Grove, CA (still Zone 10b)

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

Post  LeeAnne12 on 3/21/2012, 4:12 pm

[b] I use a tumbler and it never takes 90 days.[b]

Jo, I've been trying to make compost in a tumbler since October and it's still not done. What am I doing wrong? Grrrr!!! I just recently added rabbit food as per someone's suggestion and it heated up for a couple of days in one of the tumblers to about 120 and dropped back down.

Thanks,

Lee Anne
avatar
LeeAnne12

Female Posts : 112
Join date : 2012-02-26
Location : W TN

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

Post  littlejo on 3/21/2012, 5:05 pm

Lee Ann,

What are you putting in the tumbler?

I put whatever yard stuff I have, leaves, dried grass, pine straw, weeds(usually dry)

sawdust, wood chips(mulch), any of the above, plus I add chicken manure. I wet it down and turn daily. If it is not getting hot, I add some more manure, turn daily, if not hot, add more manure, til I get it right(and hot) The first time I tried composting, it got so hot that I thought it would melt the tumbler, it was hot to the touch on the outside of the tumbler. I must get a thermometer one of these days.

I think a tumbler should get hot in about 12 hrs.

I've heard that alfalfa pellets work real good to heat it up.

Jo
avatar
littlejo

Female Posts : 1532
Join date : 2011-05-04
Age : 63
Location : Cottageville SC 8b

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

Post  LeeAnne12 on 3/21/2012, 5:11 pm

Jo, Thanks for the tips. I think that's what the rabbit food is, but I'll go out and add some more. I've got food scraps, leaves, grass clippings and it really smells like dirt., and it looks like it has broken down some, but not a lot. ...so should the leaves look really wet? I added a lot of water a couple of weeks ago, but maybe I need to add more.

Thanks,

Lee Anne
avatar
LeeAnne12

Female Posts : 112
Join date : 2012-02-26
Location : W TN

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

Post  littlejo on 3/21/2012, 5:21 pm

They say if you squeeze a handful(yuk) it shoud barely drip. Add enough water to at least wet the rabbit food, it's high in nitrogen, so should get it working, but, it's better to not put too much water at once. If it's not hot add a little more water and rabbit food. You can aso add the cheapest dog food you can find, and it should do the same thing. Jo
avatar
littlejo

Female Posts : 1532
Join date : 2011-05-04
Age : 63
Location : Cottageville SC 8b

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Vermicompost / Compost / Topsoil

Post  Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top


 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum