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Buying Compost - five kinds?

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Buying Compost - five kinds?

Post  Hyzleyes on 4/9/2011, 2:55 pm

Having a hard time finding the five different kinds of compost. Picked up mushroom compost, moo manure compost & manure compost (not sure what kind) at Home Depot. Menards had the same mushroom compost and manure compost. Lowes has only the manure compost. I assume it's the same stuff as Menards & Home Depot. Just got off the phone with a less-than-helpful guy at Allisonville Nursery. Said they only carry one kind of compost. He couldn't tell me what kind because he was in the office, but it really didn't matter because there is only one kind of compost. (What??? I'm new to this, but I can even figure out that since compost can be made out of so many different things, there could be many, many kinds of compost...) He guaranteed me that it is not manure. Annoyed enough that I'm not going over there to see what they have.

So... wondering how critical it is to have the five different kinds. Should I just pick up a few more bags of the three kinds from Home Depot? Any other suggestions for finding a variety?

Any one get any from your local street or park department? My sister said that's where they get theirs, but they're a few hundred miles away. Can't get a hold of ours today. I can try to call Monday, but really wanted to get the beds in over the weekend. Spent plenty of time finding vermiculite, but didn't anticipate issues finding the 5 composts. Any thoughts?

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Re: Buying Compost - five kinds?

Post  jazzymaddy on 4/9/2011, 3:15 pm

I actually found some of mine on craigslist. You could give that a shot.

Best of luck!

Tracy

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Re: Buying Compost - five kinds?

Post  Hyzleyes on 4/9/2011, 3:22 pm

That's a great idea! Thanks!

***Hmmm... lots of interesting things offered up to be composted, but not much actual compost. Did find one place selling it by the cu yard, but they're closed until Monday. Might look into it if we don't have the beds in by then.***


Last edited by Hyzleyes on 4/9/2011, 3:31 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Updated)

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Re: Buying Compost - five kinds?

Post  Furbalsmom on 4/9/2011, 8:45 pm

It really is important to find five or more varieties of compost. You are looking for a blend of various nutrients for your garden. Another concern is that sometimes a bag of compost is a dud (not composted long enough is one example) and having those multiple sources of nutrition, your plants will still do well.

I found some composted chicken manure, cow and garden compost (which has a variety of ingredients) out in front of my grocery store!

Do you have any feed stores, or farm and tractor stores? Very often they carry different types of compost too. Hope you can find more without a lot of driving around. The telephone is usually your friend.

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Re: Buying Compost - five kinds?

Post  tkdtara84 on 4/9/2011, 9:20 pm

I ended up with four kinds, but since two of them have multiple ingredients, I think I'm safe. One of the ones I found was "garden compost" from Walmart, of all places. I found it by just checking the stacks of stuff out in the lot. The sign up front said it was special order, but for some reason they had it in stock. You might check there.

Also, in searching for city compost in my area, I think I found that Indy sells their compost (check the city website). Also, you might call the Indy zoo to see if they sell compost. Make sure it's not just raw doo, though. Smile

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Re: Buying Compost - five kinds?

Post  fiddleman on 4/9/2011, 10:32 pm

Hyzleyes wrote:Having a hard time finding the five different kinds of compost. Picked up mushroom compost, moo manure compost & manure compost (not sure what kind) at Home Depot. Menards had the same mushroom compost and manure compost. Lowes has only the manure compost. I assume it's the same stuff as Menards & Home Depot. Just got off the phone with a less-than-helpful guy at Allisonville Nursery. Said they only carry one kind of compost. He couldn't tell me what kind because he was in the office, but it really didn't matter because there is only one kind of compost. (What??? I'm new to this, but I can even figure out that since compost can be made out of so many different things, there could be many, many kinds of compost...) He guaranteed me that it is not manure. Annoyed enough that I'm not going over there to see what they have.


I purchased from all the above stores and if you look at the ingredients on the bags, they are quite different. Also, they come from different companies so as far as I can tell; if you bought from all of them, you have your 5 different types. You could always buy from other places as well, but unless they are from the same company, the ingredients are quite likely very different and therefore okay to use.

If the Lowes, Menards, and Home Depot stores at your location and the Lowes, Home Depot, and Menards store at my location are selling the same items, then all of the Compost and Manure are from different companies. I also bought some stuff from Walmart, Kroger, and a gas station, just to mix it up a bit.


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Re: Buying Compost - Five Kinds?

Post  Gail Celeste on 4/10/2011, 8:29 am

I am having a hard time with this too. Nobody has mushroom compost! I got a scoop of horse bedding- straw, sawdust, and one would presume some manure. Also have bags and bags from all over, but don't know at all that I have 5 different kinds. Like horse/ cow- is that one or two? I have four bags of Garden Compost from WalMart. It actually sounded like it had a good mix of ingredients itself, but, as all other sources, they are none very specific. Like it may contain this or that depending primarily on region.

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Re: Buying Compost - five kinds?

Post  FarmerValerie on 4/10/2011, 8:30 am

Our Lowe's had 5 different kinds, not sure of the size of the bags, probably 2lbs each, not one was over $1.50.

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Re: Buying Compost - five kinds?

Post  NHGardener on 4/10/2011, 8:38 am

Wow - I was at Lowes yesterday and they only had one kind - the composted cow manure I had already picked up before.

I also am having a terrible time trying to find 5 types of compost. I have lobster, cow manure (bagged from Lowes), and some kind of general compost that I'm not sure what's in it. And now I'm stuck.

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Re: Buying Compost - five kinds?

Post  camprn on 4/10/2011, 8:43 am

NHGardener wrote:Wow - I was at Lowes yesterday and they only had one kind - the composted cow manure I had already picked up before.

I also am having a terrible time trying to find 5 types of compost. I have lobster, cow manure (bagged from Lowes), and some kind of general compost that I'm not sure what's in it. And now I'm stuck.
Hi there, I have a few thoughts... have you tried asking around the grain store for local farmers? You may find a good tip on the bulletin board at the Agway store. Even someone who raises just a few animals may have extra composted stable litter. Any horse riding groups in your area? Try the NH Cooperative Extension service in your area, they may have a list of 4-H families that raise animals.

http://www.seacoasteatlocal.org/seacoastharvest/index.php

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Re: Buying Compost - five kinds?

Post  BCgarden on 4/10/2011, 9:04 am

I make my own, not hard to do, I put lots of different stuff in it. I use leaves to cover plants in the fall, and this I rake up in the spring and add it to the compost. I add fresh veggie waste to the compost, egg shells, coffee, tea bags, grass clippings. I never add cooked foods or bones. I don't add weeds either, I throw them in the trash. Now I have three 3x3 bins in various stages of composting. I love this stuff, it's black gold, and it smells great. Very Happy This is the only compost I use in my MM. In my town they charge $3.00 a bag to take away your garbage, so I compost instead.

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Re: Buying Compost - five kinds?

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 4/10/2011, 12:27 pm

Hyzleyes wrote:So... wondering how critical it is to have the five different kinds. Should I just pick up a few more bags of the three kinds from Home Depot? Any other suggestions for finding a variety?

I can tell you it can be a wild goose chase at the very least. I can also tell you that some folks cannot find some of the key components to make Mel's Mix exactly as recommended in the book. I can tell you veggies will grow in gardens with missing components.

But, I can also tell you that I echo what the others have said above. It's absolutely critical to remaining consistent with the concept of SFG that you do everything in your reasonable powers to grab five kinds of compost.

Reasonable is a relative term. I would not drive to California for my fifth type of compost being that I live in Missouri. But, I wouldn't bat an eye at making a dozen phone calls and driving 30 minutes to a spot across town.

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Re: Buying Compost - five kinds?

Post  Miss M on 4/10/2011, 12:36 pm

From what I've read, cow manure compost and horse manure compost would count as two different composts, since they don't eat all the same things, and they don't process what they eat the same way.

The mushroom compost I bought had some 4 different ingredients. I don't know in what amounts, but I'd figure that if you just can't find 5 different kinds, you can perhaps buy more of the ones that have multiple ingredients.

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compost

Post  westie42 on 4/10/2011, 11:56 pm

I constantly look around the big box stores this time of year for variety in soil amendments. At least the choices if similar do add variety of source which should be better than all one brand from the same store. A couple days ago the K-Mart here had several composts including one called organic compost. My favorite source is a feed and seed store which caters to serious small ranchers and farmers these folks I trust a lot more than the big box guys. A lot of towns compost the yard waste and sell it as finished compost. Not my first choice because some of those grass clippings were weed or bug treated with possibly unfriendly chemicals but still an additional kind of compost. Why would a well rotted hollow tree stump not yield something worth while if you dig down a bit. I will at least use that and forest top soil scrapings in my compost boxes to enrich and diversify the bacterial flora.

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Re: Buying Compost - five kinds?

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 4/11/2011, 9:11 am

westie42 wrote:Why would a well rotted hollow tree stump not yield something worth while if you dig down a bit. I will at least use that and forest top soil scrapings in my compost boxes to enrich and diversify the bacterial flora.

It absolutely would! Adding whatever you can find to the compost pile could be beneficial. An old crumpled up, decomposing stump is some of the best soil one can find. You wanna talk about friable!

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