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Can I use a barrel to mix MM?

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Can I use a barrel to mix MM?

Post  Bobalu on 3/31/2012, 4:33 pm

I'm about to mix up enough MM for two 4 X 4 beds. The thought occurred to me that it might be easier to toss all my materials in a 55 gallon drum and roll it around in the yard until thoroughly mixed. I was wondering if anyone has done this, and if there are any drawback to doing so?
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Re: Can I use a barrel to mix MM?

Post  sfg4uKim on 3/31/2012, 4:46 pm

I think that would be a great idea. Mine is done in a cement mixer so I imagine that would be about the same.

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Re: Can I use a barrel to mix MM?

Post  Glendale-gardener on 3/31/2012, 11:06 pm

I tried a 45 gallon garbage can last year and it worked great until I got greedy and put way too much in. Then the stupid lid would come off when I tried to roll it!
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Sure, keep batches small.

Post  CharlesB on 4/1/2012, 6:38 am

When filling the barrel get yourself a decent sized hand scoop. Then put in a scoop of Peat a scoop of compost and a scoop of vermiculite, repeat. You'll find you don't have to do much mixing that way. At least I didn't have to.

You can even take a five gallon bucket, dump in the three scoops, mix it up with your scooper and then dump that in to the bed. Takes a while but if it is a nice day it isn't so bad.
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Re: Can I use a barrel to mix MM?

Post  llama momma on 4/1/2012, 7:28 am

Yesterday was the first time I put buckets of ingredients in a wheelbarrow to mix and it was easy to mix with a shovel, then throw buckets of the finished mix into the box.
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Re: Can I use a barrel to mix MM?

Post  camprn on 4/1/2012, 7:36 am

I mix in a wheelbarrow, easy to fill, easy to mix, easy to dump. The barrel should work great if you only fill it 1/2-2/3 full before you roll it around. Secure a lid. Wink Good luck!

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Re: Can I use a barrel to mix MM?

Post  CCgirl75 on 4/1/2012, 9:18 am

Hubby used wheelbarrow (our 1st time) and it worked great. We used one 5 gallon bucket of each - compost/vermiculite/peat moss. He did a great job watering the mix in the wheelbarrow and didn't even need to water after we dumped into the bed. By the time we were done, we were pretty proud of the 'system' we had down. Razz
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Re: Can I use a barrel to mix MM?

Post  Bobalu on 4/1/2012, 3:56 pm

Well, I gave it a try today. I put a 5 gallon bucket of each of my compost types into the barrel. Right away I knew I was in trouble. The mix was too heavy and rolling the barrel was very difficult, to say the least. Maybe if there were handles to grab, and I were thirty years younger, but with just smooth sides to work with it was difficult moving. I pulled out my tarp, dumped what was in the barrel onto the tarp, and finished my mixing that way. I'll stick to the book for now on.
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Re: Can I use a barrel to mix MM?

Post  bullfrogbabe on 4/1/2012, 4:23 pm

I use a large pail 30L for measuring -- 3 pails each of compost, peat moss, and vermicullite. Then dump them onto a large tarp for mixing. I pull on each corner rolling the piles over each other until they are mixed. I do help it a bit by stirring with my hands -- long sleeves over tall gloves recommended. This amount fills a 4x4 box. I spray the layers of MM as I fill it into the boxes to wet the peat moss if it is very dry. Wetting it before mixing makes it stick to the tarp and it doesn't mix very well.

Don't do this on a windy day....the peat moss and vermicullite will get blown in your face or away off the tarp while you are mixing it or measuring it.

Yes I learned this the hard way.lol!
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