Square Foot Gardening Forum
[table bgcolor=#000000 height=275][tr][td]

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.


[/td][/tr][/table]
Search
 
 

Display results as :
 

 


Rechercher Advanced Search

Latest topics
» Today's Harvest
by sanderson Today at 3:26 am

» Any Strange and Wonderful Visitors? Photos please!
by sanderson Today at 3:25 am

» Hello from NE OHIO
by sanderson Today at 3:14 am

» What are you eating from your garden today?
by sanderson Today at 3:08 am

» Compost Heaps
by sanderson Today at 3:00 am

» Carrot Week 2017!
by BeetlesPerSqFt Yesterday at 10:19 pm

» Third Year SFG in Canada
by trolleydriver Yesterday at 11:26 am

» Happy Autumn Equinox
by brianj555 Yesterday at 11:24 am

» How's the Weather Where You're At?
by AtlantaMarie Yesterday at 8:46 am

» Amaranth
by AtlantaMarie Yesterday at 8:44 am

» Northern California & Coastal Valleys - What are you doing this month?
by trolleydriver Yesterday at 7:25 am

» Cucumber Plants on the Ground! :-(
by brianj555 9/21/2017, 9:27 pm

» New England September 2017
by Scorpio Rising 9/21/2017, 7:59 pm

» N&C Midwest - September 2017
by Scorpio Rising 9/21/2017, 7:56 pm

» Spotted Lanternfly: invasive pest "new" to the US
by sanderson 9/21/2017, 1:41 pm

» First red kidney bean harvest....now what?
by AtlantaMarie 9/21/2017, 6:28 am

» Fall Garden?
by sanderson 9/21/2017, 3:28 am

» Bug/Pest Identification....Help!
by Scorpio Rising 9/20/2017, 7:12 pm

» question about Garlic and winter
by Scorpio Rising 9/20/2017, 6:38 pm

» Ginger
by has55 9/20/2017, 2:38 pm

» CANADIAN REGION: What are you doing in September 2017
by Kelejan 9/20/2017, 2:29 pm

» Senseless Banter...
by AtlantaMarie 9/20/2017, 9:08 am

» harvesting wood chips
by Kelejan 9/19/2017, 9:55 pm

» Tomato Tuesday 2017
by brianj555 9/19/2017, 7:18 pm

» leeks again
by donnainzone5 9/19/2017, 12:17 pm

» WANTED: Pictures of Compost Bins
by has55 9/19/2017, 9:03 am

» My SFG Journey:Returning to the Original Square Foot Garden Method
by has55 9/19/2017, 3:05 am

» Monarch Supporter
by CitizenKate 9/19/2017, 1:43 am

» Birds of the Garden
by countrynaturals 9/18/2017, 11:29 am

» Tomatoes in New England
by Scorpio Rising 9/17/2017, 9:02 pm

Google

Search SFG Forum

Peat moss question

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Peat moss question

Post  brainchasm on 3/4/2013, 4:13 pm

So I was making my first Mel's Mix, working to keep to the formula religiously.

I bought compressed peat moss 3cuft bales, expecting it to fluff out/expand as I added it to the mix...

I ran out of peat moss from the first bale before I finished the 16cuft I needed for the first bed.

Did I do something wrong? I know my math was right, but I think the peat didn't double in volume.

Now my 16cuft bed has 3cuft (supposedly compressed) of peat moss in it, and I am worried about my mix.
avatar
brainchasm

Male Posts : 463
Join date : 2013-02-26
Age : 41
Location : Las Vegas, NV

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  plantoid on 3/4/2013, 4:32 pm

hi this is a variable with compressed volumes of air fill things like peat.


The heavier & more dense the bale the more it will have been compressed volume for volume
I had the same prob as you last year, three compressed bags were supposed to give be 40 litres per bag costing 3 for £ 10 litres , a compressed bale was 125 litres & cost £ 11

When I tried to calculate things and got someone to weight the bags it turned out that the bale was far heavier than the three bags by about 15 Kg.
On buying 6 bags and six bales , I found that the two compressed bales gave the volume of fluffed up peat as would have filled eight bags when fluffed up .
avatar
plantoid

Male Posts : 3727
Join date : 2011-11-09
Age : 66

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  walshevak on 3/4/2013, 4:39 pm

brainchasm wrote:So I was making my first Mel's Mix, working to keep to the formula religiously.

I bought compressed peat moss 3cuft bales, expecting it to fluff out/expand as I added it to the mix...

I ran out of peat moss from the first bale before I finished the 16cuft I needed for the first bed.

Did I do something wrong? I know my math was right, but I think the peat didn't double in volume.

Now my 16cuft bed has 3cuft (supposedly compressed) of peat moss in it, and I am worried about my mix.

3 cu ft of compressed peat will fluff to 6 cu ft. 1 bale mixed 1/3, 1/3, 1/3 should have produced 18 cu ft of MM. Did you fluff before mixing?

I have noticed that the 3.8 cu ft bale I bought 2 years ago is now 3.2 cu ft. and 2.2 cu ft bales are out there.

Kay
Kay

____________________________

A WEED IS A FLOWER GROWING IN THE WRONG PLACE
Elizabeth City, NC
Find more about Weather in Elizabeth City, NC
Click for weather forecast
avatar
walshevak

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 4355
Join date : 2010-10-17
Age : 74
Location : wilmington, nc zone 8

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  brainchasm on 3/4/2013, 4:46 pm

walshevak wrote:
brainchasm wrote:So I was making my first Mel's Mix, working to keep to the formula religiously.

I bought compressed peat moss 3cuft bales, expecting it to fluff out/expand as I added it to the mix...

I ran out of peat moss from the first bale before I finished the 16cuft I needed for the first bed.

Did I do something wrong? I know my math was right, but I think the peat didn't double in volume.

Now my 16cuft bed has 3cuft (supposedly compressed) of peat moss in it, and I am worried about my mix.

3 cu ft of compressed peat will fluff to 6 cu ft. 1 bale mixed 1/3, 1/3, 1/3 should have produced 18 cu ft of MM. Did you fluff before mixing?

I have noticed that the 3.8 cu ft bale I bought 2 years ago is now 3.2 cu ft. and 2.2 cu ft bales are out there.

Kay
Kay
Yes, I broke up the bale by hand, and made sure not to compress it when I was scooping. It was very light and definitely broken up when I was measuring, it just didn't double up. I was thinking/hoping that maybe it needed water to get to full expansion, but then I noticed that my volume measurements (to get to 16cuft) worked out perfectly (raised bed is full to the top), so I'm guessing it just didn't double up as expected.

C'est la guerre...it's not rocket surgery I suppose.
avatar
brainchasm

Male Posts : 463
Join date : 2013-02-26
Age : 41
Location : Las Vegas, NV

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  walshevak on 3/4/2013, 4:53 pm

My take on it is if you wind up a little short on anything make sure it's not the compost. Razz

____________________________

A WEED IS A FLOWER GROWING IN THE WRONG PLACE
Elizabeth City, NC
Find more about Weather in Elizabeth City, NC
Click for weather forecast
avatar
walshevak

Certified SFG Instructor

Female Posts : 4355
Join date : 2010-10-17
Age : 74
Location : wilmington, nc zone 8

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  camprn on 3/4/2013, 4:53 pm

At this point, if you don't have any more sphagnum peat and you are limited on funds, go ahead and add more blended compost to fill the bed then stir it up a bit. Compost is the ingredient that gives nutrition to the mix.

____________________________

41 years a gardener and going strong with SFG.
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-weeks-until-frost

There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t1306-other-gardening-books



avatar
camprn

Forum Moderator Certified SFG Teacher

Female Posts : 14165
Join date : 2010-03-06
Age : 55
Location : Keene, NH, USA ~ Zone 5a

View user profile http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-week

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  greengrass on 3/4/2013, 4:56 pm

well the 100litre bales i got were heavy, so i thought they were
compressed.(though the bag didn't state it was compressed)

i emptied one 100l bag to measure it, and i got it to around 75 litres!
so i've emptied all my peat bales and wet them, and will leave them
open to the air for a few days.
though nothing much is happening- it's not fluffing up or uncompressing yet.
i may have to get more if it stays the same!
gg
avatar
greengrass

Male Posts : 50
Join date : 2013-02-02
Location : lancashire

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  dvelten on 3/4/2013, 5:46 pm

The rule of thumb that compressed peat expands to double the compressed volume is only a guideline to be used in making MM calculations. If you want to be precise, the only way to do that is to use a container to measure out equal volumes of each component. The problem is not limited to peat but also bagged compost. Does that 40 lb. bag really contain one cubic foot?

I have 11 raised beds and despite the calculations, not once has the MM I mixed based on the formulas succeeded in filling the beds. My last attempt was filling my 4x6 8 inch beds (16 cubic feet each). Since my vermiculite came in 6 cu. ft. bags, I bought materials to make 18 cu. ft. of MM (1 bag vermiculite, a 3.8 cu. ft. bale and a 2 cu ft. bale of peat, and 6 cu. ft. bags of assorted compost). That's 18 cu ft. but the MM did not come up to the top edge of the boxes.

Bottom line, I wouldn't worry too much. If you have it, just add some extra compost as camprn suggests and get ready to plant! It's almost spring, even up here in NE!
avatar
dvelten

Certified SFG Instructor

Male Posts : 155
Join date : 2011-09-18
Location : Bolton, MA Zone 6a

View user profile http://davessfggarden.blogspot.com

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  plantoid on 3/4/2013, 6:22 pm

greengrass wrote:well the 100litre bales i got were heavy, so i thought they were
compressed.(though the bag didn't state it was compressed)

i emptied one 100l bag to measure it, and i got it to around 75 litres!
so i've emptied all my peat bales and wet them, and will leave them
open to the air for a few days.
though nothing much is happening- it's not fluffing up or uncompressing yet.
i may have to get more if it stays the same!
gg


Ding a ling ....Ding a ling..... the bells ring..
Perhaps 75 litres fluffs to 100 litres when well wetted and fluffed up ...... does that help ?
avatar
plantoid

Male Posts : 3727
Join date : 2011-11-09
Age : 66

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  greengrass on 3/4/2013, 7:03 pm

plantoid wrote:
greengrass wrote:well the 100litre bales i got were heavy, so i thought they were
compressed.(though the bag didn't state it was compressed)

i emptied one 100l bag to measure it, and i got it to around 75 litres!
so i've emptied all my peat bales and wet them, and will leave them
open to the air for a few days.
though nothing much is happening- it's not fluffing up or uncompressing yet.
i may have to get more if it stays the same!
gg


Ding a ling ....Ding a ling..... the bells ring..
Perhaps 75 litres fluffs to 100 litres when well wetted and fluffed up ...... does that help ?

well it's 2 days and counting, and still looks the same to me Smile
avatar
greengrass

Male Posts : 50
Join date : 2013-02-02
Location : lancashire

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  plantoid on 3/4/2013, 8:05 pm

Ah well ....


Psssst ........go and buy another bag when you can afford it ???? Laughing
avatar
plantoid

Male Posts : 3727
Join date : 2011-11-09
Age : 66

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  brainchasm on 3/5/2013, 1:39 pm

camprn wrote:At this point, if you don't have any more sphagnum peat and you are limited on funds, go ahead and add more blended compost to fill the bed then stir it up a bit. Compost is the ingredient that gives nutrition to the mix.
This is what I ended up doing; the last batch that topped off the bed with pretty much just compost and vermiculite.
I have two more bales (I had expected to end up with extra, hah!) so for my peace of mind I'll just make sure that the bale is evenly used amongst my batches for the next bed.
avatar
brainchasm

Male Posts : 463
Join date : 2013-02-26
Age : 41
Location : Las Vegas, NV

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Uh ohhh... I miscalculated this too, now what...?

Post  ASlatzer on 5/4/2013, 5:23 pm

I needed 13.5 Cubic Ft. of each of my 3 ingredients for MM. I bought 3 compressed bales of Peat Moss that were each 3 Cubic Ft compressed... if it will fluff to roughly 2x the size then I actually have about 18 Cubic Ft. of Peat Moss... what can I do to my mix at this point? Will it be okay?
avatar
ASlatzer

Female Posts : 12
Join date : 2013-04-29
Age : 39
Location : Boise, Idaho

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  camprn on 5/4/2013, 5:30 pm

If you have extra peat after mixing per the instructions that is ok BUT... this is a big but... DO NOT add more than the recommended 1/3 of peat. If you need to add filler to have the level of the mix to the top of the box, add compost instead.

____________________________

41 years a gardener and going strong with SFG.
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-weeks-until-frost

There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t1306-other-gardening-books



avatar
camprn

Forum Moderator Certified SFG Teacher

Female Posts : 14165
Join date : 2010-03-06
Age : 55
Location : Keene, NH, USA ~ Zone 5a

View user profile http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-week

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  ASlatzer on 5/4/2013, 5:48 pm

Okay... well, I definitely have more than a 1/3 of the prescribed Peat Moss if it's going to fluff to 2x the compressed size... so I am over by 5 cubic feet... should I just add 5 cubic feet of compost? I just finished mixing everything and it's in our 8x4 garden box but nothing planted yet.
avatar
ASlatzer

Female Posts : 12
Join date : 2013-04-29
Age : 39
Location : Boise, Idaho

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  camprn on 5/4/2013, 5:56 pm

The compressed bale of sphagnum will not truly double. Maybe I am missing something....Did you use a bucket to measure? Did you mix it according to the directions of 1/3 peat, 1/3 vermiculite/perlite, 1/3 mixed compost? If you have extra peat, do not add that in. If you have extra compost, you can add that in.

Did I answer your question?

____________________________

41 years a gardener and going strong with SFG.
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-weeks-until-frost

There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t1306-other-gardening-books



avatar
camprn

Forum Moderator Certified SFG Teacher

Female Posts : 14165
Join date : 2010-03-06
Age : 55
Location : Keene, NH, USA ~ Zone 5a

View user profile http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-week

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  ASlatzer on 5/4/2013, 6:06 pm

I really only measured by what the bag said... thinking I knew I needed 13.5 cubic feet of each of the 3 ingredients and I knew that the peat would expand but didn't read about the doubling somewhere until after I did my mixing..... I only bought 9 cubic feet of the compressed peat to allow for expanding...

I think I am fine but will be working in some more compost since I do have a little room left after I watered it and it settled a bit. The mix looks and feels great but I'd feel better with more compost. Thank you so much for your help, yes you did answer my question thanks

I'm new to SFG so just trying to learn as much as I can!
avatar
ASlatzer

Female Posts : 12
Join date : 2013-04-29
Age : 39
Location : Boise, Idaho

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  camprn on 5/4/2013, 6:30 pm

Oki doki. Don't forget to water your mix in the boxes WELL. Stilck your hand to the bottom and make sure it's moist. If your plants are slow to grow in the next few weeks, top dress the bed with compost.

Good luck!

What are you using for a grid?

____________________________

41 years a gardener and going strong with SFG.
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-weeks-until-frost

There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t1306-other-gardening-books



avatar
camprn

Forum Moderator Certified SFG Teacher

Female Posts : 14165
Join date : 2010-03-06
Age : 55
Location : Keene, NH, USA ~ Zone 5a

View user profile http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t3574-the-end-of-july-7-week

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  ASlatzer on 5/4/2013, 10:55 pm

So basically soak the box down? I sprayed it but I know it's not moist all the way through...

We decided on nylon line for now... I was torn with the lath... We have knots tied through U-shaped nails so I can take everything off later if I decide I want to switch over to lath
avatar
ASlatzer

Female Posts : 12
Join date : 2013-04-29
Age : 39
Location : Boise, Idaho

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

Post  Triciasgarden on 5/5/2013, 1:33 am

Yes soak the whole box down and as Camprn says stick your hand down to the bottom to see if it is moist. The peat has a hard time absorbing water the first time but it is important to do it or you will have pockets of dry MM and your plants will be affected. After the first soaking of the peat, you only need to water normally after that.
avatar
Triciasgarden

Female Posts : 1632
Join date : 2010-06-04
Age : 62
Location : Northern Utah

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Peat moss question

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