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Help! What to do with bags of compost left out in the rain!

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Help! What to do with bags of compost left out in the rain!

Post  OahuSFG on 12/20/2010, 9:12 pm

It has been raining very heavy and I left 2 bags of compost in the rain in a container.
The bags are soaked! What should be done to keep it from going smelly? I'm not quite ready to plant in all this rain just yet, but will if I have to.

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Re: Help! What to do with bags of compost left out in the rain!

Post  middlemamma on 12/20/2010, 10:23 pm

Ok...no compost expert here....but our home depots and Lowes garden centers are outside under no cover in summer here. So any summer rains rain right on top of all that stuff....it dries out....never seems to be an issue.

I have purchased bags that were soaked through and it was no problemo...

Someone correct me if I am wrong...
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Re: Help! What to do with bags of compost left out in the rain!

Post  Megan on 12/20/2010, 10:28 pm

Well, get the bags out of the water-filled container, for starters. Save the water for manure tea? It probably will smell a bit, but it's all good.
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Re: Help! What to do with bags of compost left out in the rain!

Post  Lavender Debs on 12/21/2010, 4:13 am

What Megan said.

Leaching can be a problem. The reason you want to keep the water is because the good "stuff" in compost leaches (leaks) into the water like tea into a teacup.
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Re: Help! What to do with bags of compost left out in the rain!

Post  OahuSFG on 12/21/2010, 3:18 pm

Thanks for the tips.

I won't be buying compost stored out in the open if the nutrients leech out when it rains onto it.

I used wet compost once, and the plant I re-potted, died. The compost was a little bit smelly though.

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Re: Help! What to do with bags of compost left out in the rain!

Post  Megan on 12/21/2010, 5:18 pm

The compost I've bought is generally bagged fairly water-tight. I don't think you'd want it to be bone dry, though. The damp helps it to rot better.
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Re: Help! What to do with bags of compost left out in the rain!

Post  Lavender Debs on 12/21/2010, 7:14 pm

Once again, ditto Megan.
Compost in bags doesn't always smell good. It probably shouldn't gag you but a distinct nose wrinkle should be fine. Remember, compost isn't meant to plant in. It is for mixing it up with peat and vermiculite.

Good gardening Ohau.
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Re: Help! What to do with bags of compost left out in the rain!

Post  LaFee on 12/22/2010, 3:04 am

and if it's a little wet, it saves you from having to soak and re-soak it yourself.

A little leaching isn't going to hurt anything...remember that most compost gets rained on all the time, and the stuff leaches into the ground under the compost pile...so you never even see it.

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