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Soil looks low

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Soil looks low

Post  BonnieJ on 5/24/2011, 9:37 am

All my plants are in and I notice that after the rain all my square foot boxes with MM soil levels look extremely low, now what do I do? I did add a little Miracle Grow organic soil mix to some of my boxes but do you think I goofed up.

Since I just planted all my seeds, do you think I should make more MM and add it and replant the seeds again?

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Re: Soil looks low

Post  Kelejan on 5/24/2011, 10:13 am

BonnieJ to the SFG forum.

I am quite newbie here myself, so I will let more experienced folk advise you but of course I could jump in with my opinion but I might turn out to be wrong. Very Happy

I have learned a lot and as this is a new question to me, I can learn along with you.
Give folks time to get out of bed (it is just after 7am here now in the Pacific timeline).

Again welcome to this lovely and friendly site.

Kelejan

PS It is exactly one month since I have been here, joined April 24.
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Re: Soil looks low

Post  MikeP on 5/24/2011, 10:54 am

I have the same issue and did not use anything but the peat/compost/vermiculite combination, so I don't think that using a little Miracle Gro soil is what caused the problem.

This happened a couple of weeks ago as well, and since I hadn't planted most squares it wasn't that big of an issue to just fluff them back up with a hand rake.
Now that I've planted most squares, I'm going to see if I can fluff up some of the mix without disturbing the plants when I visit our garden this afternoon. I still have a few squares unplanted so I think those will be fine, but I had just transplanted my tomatoes and peppers so I'll need to be careful with those.

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Re: Soil looks low

Post  FarmerValerie on 5/24/2011, 10:58 am

Mel's mix does settle a bit, try fluffing and see what happens. Please keep us posted.
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Re: Soil looks low

Post  Kelejan on 5/24/2011, 11:06 am

Perhaps it would be better to wait a bit after filling the boxes and then topping up before actually seeding?

I planted as soon as I had filled my boxes and now notice that the surfaces are lower. Perhaps it is not important? Everything seems to be doing well so far.

Is there a crossed-fingers emoticon?
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Re: Soil looks low

Post  Blackrose on 5/24/2011, 11:13 am

@Kelejan wrote:Perhaps it would be better to wait a bit after filling the boxes and then topping up before actually seeding?

+1

This is what I did. I also overfilled my boxes by putting 10 cubic feet of MM in each 4x4 instead of the recommended 8 cubic feet.
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Re: Soil looks low

Post  Kelejan on 5/24/2011, 11:19 am

Another idea that may work.

When replanting an empty square, one adds a trowel full of compost. Why not make that three trowels of MM plus an extra one of compost. That will keep the ratio right. At the end of the season the whole area can be levelled.

Next season jsut add your compost as usual and start again.
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Low Soil

Post  BonnieJ on 5/24/2011, 11:52 am

Last year was my 1st year with the Square Foot Garden and for the most everything grew well. The beginning of this season, I fluffed all my boxes and added manuer only, then started planting some plants. Yesterday, I fluffed before I finished planting, now when I look at my boxes they look 1/2 full, which means about 5". So, should I make somemore MM and start over or just add compost. Some people say just add compost, because the peat moss and vermiculite is still good. I don't mind the re-seading and I think for the few plants I do have I can just transplant them again. Thanks for all input.

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Re: Soil looks low

Post  MikeP on 5/24/2011, 11:57 am

BonnieJ, you have PMs turned off so I can't respond to your PM.

This is my first year SFG, but when I replant my spinach and lettuce in a month I'll add 2-3 scoops of MM and 1 scoop of Mel's, but those boxes were a little low to begin with and I wasn't 100% happy with their MM ratio.

I also want to increase the ratio of compost to peat, since every compost I've picked up lists peat as an ingredient. My preferred ratio will be 1/3 V, 2/9 P, 4/9 C.

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Re: Soil looks low

Post  Miss M on 5/24/2011, 12:29 pm

The MM has probably settled a bit. Did you line the bottom of your box
with weed cloth? It helps keep the mix from washing out of the box.

If everything is doing well, I'd just continue as is, but make sure to water enough later on when everything is big. Then top off your squares as you harvest them. What a Face As long as your mix isn't washing out, you shouldn't continue to have this problem.

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Re: Soil looks low

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 5/24/2011, 1:12 pm

@BonnieJ wrote:All my plants are in and I notice that after the rain all my square foot boxes with MM soil levels look extremely low, now what do I do? I did add a little Miracle Grow organic soil mix to some of my boxes but do you think I goofed up.

Since I just planted all my seeds, do you think I should make more MM and add it and replant the seeds again?

Let's not get carried away and panic just yet. First, how deep are the boxes now....your best guess? 4 inches? 2 inches?

If it's 4-5 inches, you are fine. Don't worry until season's end. Things will grow just fine.
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Re: Soil looks low

Post  HieronRemade on 5/24/2011, 4:21 pm

I had the same problem; I just got the rest of my bed filled yesterday right before a storm and afterward it had settled to only 4 or 5 inches. I hope it's ok cuz I can't afford to make another trowel full of MM this year, lol.
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