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Local garden supply mix

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Local garden supply mix

Post  NatMar283 on 4/5/2014, 11:17 am

Ok I am going to post all of my mix questions in the compost forum rather than break it up to their respective forums. I am new and this is my first post BTW. I was willing and able to hunt down compost/vermiculite and peat when I realized large quantities of vermiculite are hard to come by as is peat. A very trusted garden supply shop has a mix of mushroom compost/top soil/aged mulched wood bark

I am not too thrilled by the topsoil and bark but might it be ok if the soil is finely screened and the bark is mulched well?

Wood bark? 

Is mushroom compost too high in nitrogen? I am planting a good variety of plants including cayenne peppers and tomatoes and watermelon.

The garden place says they have been using this mix forever and their customers love it. I believe them and as I said they are very well respected in this area but the mix seems like it would compact with rain and watering to me. I could give it a shot and if it doesn't work out just spread it across the yard lol. The yard could use some good nutrients. Any thoughts. Thanks guys and girls.

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Re: Local garden supply mix

Post  sanderson on 4/5/2014, 12:48 pm

NatMar, Welcome to the Forum!  glad you\'re here 

You didn't mention if you are going to use the Square Foot Garden method of gardening. If you are going to SFG, the best thing to do is get hold of the book All New Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholomew. Try Amazon or eBay if your budget is tight. There's no soil in Mel's Mix.

Please tell us a little more about your gardening experience, your hopes and dreams for your new garden. That will make it easier for members to help you.

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Re: Local garden supply mix

Post  NatMar283 on 4/5/2014, 2:40 pm

Thanks sanderson. I actually bought the book yesterday. I have read most of it and have to admit I am like a little child itching to get this started. I do not have much experience with gardening itself but have grown up around a family strawberry farm and family orchards so I am not completely useless lol. I was pretty sure I am going to want to stick to the book especially as a beginner. I will have to purchase bags of material from different shops I suppose. It will cost more but next year, for example, I should be ok. I don't mind spending the bit of extra money if it means good returns with little investment over the next few years. Thanks again. 

Does that mean mushroom compost is out? I haven't seen much talk in Mel's book about mushroom compost or at least i haven't got to it yet.

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Re: Local garden supply mix

Post  camprn on 4/5/2014, 3:05 pm

hi Nat and welcome! Mushroom compost is good. Some of my ideas where you can find more and different composts. Try looking:
on craigslist farm and garden section,
dairy farms
horse stables,
rabbit, goat, llama farms, chicken, or turkey farms.

Your local farmer's market, maybe make some connections with them.

Also you could get going with your own compost pile.


43 years a gardener and going strong with SFG.

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



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Re: Local garden supply mix

Post  Goosegirl on 4/5/2014, 4:03 pm

There are several members on the forum who use or have used mushroom compost with success as one of their 5 sources of compost.  Just made sure to check the ingredients to account for any extra peat that may be mixed in some of your composts.  If there is, you will need to adjust out some of your peat from the 1/3 of the MM. Are there farms around your area where you may be able to get some free composted manure from their animals?  If so, each animal contributing to the mix counts as one of your 5 (different critters, different nutrients left over in their 'leftovers').  However, be careful of using ALL animal sources as your compost, as it can end up VERY rich and you end up for the first year with all greens and not much produce!   (or sooooo rich that everything burns  Embarassed )

Let us know how your search goes!


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Re: Local garden supply mix

Post  NatMar283 on 4/5/2014, 8:16 pm

Absolutely. I live in an area in Pennsylvania that was heavily farmed back in the day and is going through a sort of agricultural and environmental rebirth so there is an abundance of manure and such to be had. The county environmental conservation people also have a free composting site but it is mostly Christmas trees and such that has been composted. I will send some emails around to local co-op community farmers and such. Thanks

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