Square Foot Gardening Forum
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Finding Mel's Mix

Post  LtTawnyMadison on Mon 28 May 2012 - 13:00

Wow... I have called 5 Home Depot & 1 Lowe's nursery dept's near us (Southern NH). For each and every call, I had to spell "M-E-L-S" for the person multiple times and each one in a confused, annoyed voice said they don't have it and have never heard of it. (Tried Agway too) FRUSTRATING!! I was hoping to be able to buy it instead of making it Sad
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  Lindacol on Mon 28 May 2012 - 13:24

@LtTawnyMadison wrote:Wow... I have called 5 Home Depot & 1 Lowe's nursery dept's near us (Southern NH). For each and every call, I had to spell "M-E-L-S" for the person multiple times and each one in a confused, annoyed voice said they don't have it and have never heard of it. (Tried Agway too) FRUSTRATING!! I was hoping to be able to buy it instead of making it Sad

If they have it they will not know it as Mels mix. Here is what the bag looks like here in southern California.
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  LtTawnyMadison on Mon 28 May 2012 - 14:09

Oooooh. THANKS!! Drat, now I have to call them again!! LOL

Is it ONLY Home Depot or Lowe's that would have it? That's what the online page seemed to indicate.


Last edited by LtTawnyMadison on Mon 28 May 2012 - 14:20; edited 2 times in total
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  LtTawnyMadison on Mon 28 May 2012 - 14:14

How would I go about figuring out how much less expensive it is to make my own mix rather than ordering it online if the local stores don't have it? I'm doing 2 boxes.
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no go

Post  LtTawnyMadison on Mon 28 May 2012 - 14:28

Called 'em all again - nobody has it! boo hoo.
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  walshevak on Mon 28 May 2012 - 15:55

The real savings as far as I can tell is in time not necessarily money. Finding components and mixing can be very time consuming. But maybe some of your NH or Northern MA neighbors can help. Put out the call and check your regional forum. Others have had to gather the stuff.

I will start you with the vermiculite database list.

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AkxGrCEb40U2dExrM09fbk9zWnE4cC1Gb2oyamVOMVE&hl=en#gid=0

and it looks like AGWAY is your best bet.



Kay

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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  Daniel9999 on Mon 28 May 2012 - 16:34

The prebagged Mel's Mix sells for $12.95 per 2 cubic feet in New York...I think its safe to assume that is about what it would sell for in New Hampshire if you found it.

http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-202250794/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10053&langId=-1&keyword=square+foot+garden&storeId=10051

It takes 8 cubic feet of Mel's Mix to fill one 4 foot by 4 foot by 6 inch bed according to the calculator...

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/h22-mel-s-mix-calculator

That works out to be $51.80 per 4 foot by 4 foot by 6 inch box.

You can compare that price with you can source locally.
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Thanks

Post  LtTawnyMadison on Mon 28 May 2012 - 16:47

Thanks for all the great info!!
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Agway FTW

Post  LtTawnyMadison on Tue 29 May 2012 - 17:53

Agway rocks! I just went up to the cashier, told her what I needed and she rang it all up and had the very nice & helpful guys gather it all together. Unlike when I called Home Depot and Lowe's, and when I visited the nursery up the street from my house, Agway had everything I needed and didn't treat me like I was nuts.

The only thing I wasn't sure of was how the 40lb compost bags would translate into cubic feet, so I got 8 bags (=320lb). I guess I'll have to eyeball it. Is it ok if there's a bit more compost and it's not exactly 1/3, or do I need to mix and measure the compost first to make it exact?
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  Goosegirl on Tue 29 May 2012 - 18:29

When in doubt, add extra compost! That is where you will get the nutrients for your garden, and even Mel says that in areas in the world where you cannot get the ingredients for MM, use straight compost!

GREAT SCORE!!!

GG
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  chjbr63 on Tue 29 May 2012 - 19:22

I agree Agway does rock. They helped with my garden a lot. As for the 40lbs bags they are between 3/4 and 1 cu.ft. As recommended somewhere on the forum (sorry I don't remember who) I used a 5 gal bucket. 5 buckets of compost(one each of the 5 needed) mix them together real good then 5 buckets of vermiculite and then 5 of fluffed peat. Blend it until mixed well. Add it in layers, watering each layer real good.

Good Luck and Happy Gardening
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Great!

Post  LtTawnyMadison on Tue 29 May 2012 - 21:03

I need 8cf of compost so I guess 8 bags should be about right. Thanks!

Tonight I found the Mel's Mix listed on Agway's website under the name "GRO-WELL BRANDS SQUARE FOOT GARDENING SOIL." Which isn't the name I asked them about when I called. It would be great if they stock it, because it would only cost $10 more than all the individual things I got -- and we wouldn't have to mix it all!

http://www.agway.com/catalog/home_and_garden/soil/garden/10212649_gro-well_brands_square_foot_gardening_soil_2cuft.html
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  walshevak on Wed 30 May 2012 - 3:45

ARRGGG, when will NC get it. It looks like each store will have its own brand name attached to the Mel's Mix. Lowes is called Gardentime I believe. Anybody know what Home Depot is calling it?

It will be great to top off your beds if you miscalculated on the original round of ingredients. I eventually used 10 cu ft per bed, but I've got 8" beds. That made 7" deep which settled to about 6"

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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  LtTawnyMadison on Wed 30 May 2012 - 10:05

So... I have just found out that my local Agway can order the Mel's Mix for me!! Woo hoo! If you go to their website and get the SKU # (see my link above) they can order it even if they don't have it in stock. Just thought others might want to know
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New smaller Mel's Mix bag

Post  Roseinarosecity on Wed 30 May 2012 - 14:29

Our local Lowe's has restocked BUT it is now a 32 dry quart bag at $8.98.
That makes it a smaller bag. What used to be 2 cu.ft. is now a 1.24 cu.ft.!

It is still made by Gardentime with a new bag design.

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Water Mels Mix?

Post  cpl100 on Mon 25 Jun 2012 - 13:21

Hello, This is my first post. I am new to vegetable gardening and new to this site and the concept. I was hoping to set up a 4 x 4 x 14" arden using a kit I saw on the Home Depot pages (stacking two of them). I have so many questions it is not funny, but one that occurs to me pertaining to using the pre-packaged Mel's mix is this. I know I read that when making the mix yourself, you are to water it as you go. Would you still water the pre-made Mel's mix? I was unclear whether the watering was to aid the mixing or whether one waters it to aid in the future planting (or both). Thank you.
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  LtTawnyMadison on Mon 25 Jun 2012 - 15:09

With the pre-made Mel's Mix you can pour it all in and then water it all afterwards.
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  LtTawnyMadison on Mon 25 Jun 2012 - 15:40

Oh, and it was only $10 more total to get the pre-made stuff, and soooo worth it, not having to do the mixing work, and knowing I can't get it wrong!
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  cpl100 on Mon 25 Jun 2012 - 20:51

Thanks. Now my problem is finding it. Lowes had it on their website but it is not in the store. I also just read some disturbing posts about an apparent quality control issue which has resulted in bags that are just 'not right' and nothing growing in them.

What to do????
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  tabletopper on Tue 26 Jun 2012 - 4:25

Proceed with caution......here in California there seems to be a problem in buying prepared Mels Mix....I have bought a lot over a period of time at Chula Vista Lowes at $12.95 a 2 cu ft bag...and the store always had a far away stack of the bags not where the other kinds of bags were....

Buy no more than 4 bags and see how it goes.....another forum member invested $700 for 12 squares and the mix does nothing......he is also in Calif....my last purchases have done nothing.....dont know if its a local distributor or not....keep your receipts as it is supposed to be gaurenteed......the bags have very small bark in the mix....that is not in the receipe...

If you mix your own....remember to fluff the peat moss than measure.....I have mixed small amounts in a wheel barrow....one bucket of each at a time....mixed well.....good luck.............Ruth

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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  cpl100 on Tue 26 Jun 2012 - 8:17

tabletopper, that is the issue to which I referred in my post. I am now so uncertain as to how to proceed. My alternative to trying to find the bagged Mel's mix (which I have yet to locate anyway) was to use the Gardener and Bloome's mix but I can't find that either. I am wondering if anyone on the east coast has used the bagged Mel's mix this year and the results.

Unfortunately the website for the Gardener and Bloome's products does not have a store locator on it. I emailed them for help so hopefully they will come back with a location that is a reasonable distance,
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  LtTawnyMadison on Tue 26 Jun 2012 - 9:20

Well, dang it, that doesn't sound good!! I used 26cf of Mel's Mix! I'm starting from plants not seeds. I will keep you posted, as I am in New England.
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  toledobend on Tue 26 Jun 2012 - 9:45

When using bags with pounds instead of cubic feet, I use a five gallon bucket to find the cubic feet. One five gallon bucket of material is .66 cubic feet. So if you use a 2 cubic foot compressed bag of peat, and a 4 cubic foot bag of the vermiculite, use 6 buckets of blended compost or (this is probably more accurate) one bucket of each compost ingrediant plus one bucket of all five ingrediants (or if your lucky, a bucket of a 6th ingrediant). I never did find a fifth but I did have a little of my own compost so I used two buckets of it.
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

Post  Pepper on Tue 26 Jun 2012 - 9:50

Here is a similar post currently active on MM http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t12964p15-mels-mix#129425
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Re: Finding Mel's Mix

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