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Oops! Botched Mel's Mix. Now What?

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Oops! Botched Mel's Mix. Now What?

Post  Finch on 5/26/2010, 10:06 am

I have Mel's old SFG book, so this winter when I was planning my garden I got online and learned of all the updates. Such as Mels' Mix. Unfortunately I didn't see (or I overlooked) the fact that he says never to use only one kind of compost, use FIVE. I bought the vermiculite, peat moss, and lots of mushroom compost. That's it.

I had a very lush spring garden, lots of gorgeous greens and lettuce, etc. Carrots fine, beets fine, most things fine. I've had some issues with my tomatoes (lots of growth but tough and gnarled, with little fruit). Pole beans are lookoing that way now, too. So I'm on the look-out for problems. Been doing research online and no one thing seems to be the cause.

Yesterday I bought the new book to give a neighbor (who LOVES my garden ) and of course had to read it before giving it to her. Saw I had done it wrong.

So I'm pretty sure my Mix could use some help. I've started using fish emulsion. Any other ideas out there?
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Re: Oops! Botched Mel's Mix. Now What?

Post  plb on 5/26/2010, 10:18 am

Mix 5 types of compost, or as many as you can find. Then add a scoop to each of the squares that are empty, or add one every time you harvest a square (as recommended by the book). That should amend your mix.

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Re: Oops! Botched Mel's Mix. Now What?

Post  semiuseless on 5/26/2010, 11:27 am

Adding a scoop of compost to each square every time you replant will go a long way toward getting the kind of mix you need.

If you are really worried, then over the winter add a bag or two of mixed compost to each box and mix it in.

If you make your own compost, you will far exceed 5 sources without even trying. In the last week I have added the following to my compost pile: dried leaves from hedge clippings, grass clippings, two bunches of cut flowers, garden leaves from pruning, at least a dozen kinds of vegetable peels, two watermelon rinds, egg shells, mushrooms, and peanut shells.
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Re: Oops! Botched Mel's Mix. Now What?

Post  Retired Member 1 on 5/26/2010, 2:13 pm

All good suggestions for improving your mix. The Mel's mix I made up had 5 kinds of compost but one bed is still not doing well, so I use a Miracle Grow for veggies clone. There is a certified organic one if that is important to you. Your plants need help now as you enrich your soil for the future.

I also found rabbit manure and spread the pellets around. The combination of that plus fertilizer has helped tremendously.

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