Square Foot Gardening Forum
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Existing soil

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Existing soil

Post  weinhkd on 8/15/2011, 2:53 am

Hi!
I already have great soil in my raised bed garden. How should I incorporate "Mel's Mix" into my existing soil? Rolling Eyes
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Re: Existing soil

Post  shannon1 on 8/15/2011, 3:11 am

Hi and welcome, congrats on having great soil. Mels Mix is a soiless mix and should be used alone. It you wanted to build a box deeper than 6" for extra long carrots for example you could use your soil in the bottom and fill the top 6" with Mels mix. If you put anything other than 1/3 peat,1/3 vermiculite, and 1/3 a mix of 5 composts (or your own compost)in, it is no longer Mel's Mix.

Try reading "how strong is your backbone" here on this site it will explain it fully.

Or even better read Mel's new book "all new square foot gardening".



Again
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existing soil

Post  weinhkd on 8/15/2011, 3:39 am

I bought the soil that I currently have so I hate to dig it out and start over. I'm currently reading the new SFG book- wish I'd of read it this earlier this spring. Where do I find, "How Strong is Your Backbone?"
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Re: Existing soil

Post  shannon1 on 8/15/2011, 3:43 am

To the left where "Latest Topics" is down at the bottom is a search box just type it in there.
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Re: Existing soil

Post  shannon1 on 8/15/2011, 3:46 am

I use potting soil in some of the pots I have flowering plants I have to attract pollinators.
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Re: Existing soil

Post  Furbalsmom on 8/15/2011, 3:49 am

HOW STRONG IS YOUR BACKBONE <<<<



There you go and weinhkd



It is sad not to be able to use your purchased soil in SFGning, but you will love the Mel's Mix. Just dig out 6 inches of your purchased soil and use it for flowers or containers. Add a layer of weedcloth, place your 6 inches of Mel's Mix in your SFG bed and add a grid. You are ready to go!

Glad you are getting a chance to read ALL NEW SQUARE FOOT GARDENING. It is a great book and full of simple instructions to help you get going.



Again, Welcome
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Existing soil

Post  weinhkd on 8/15/2011, 4:04 am

Found the article! Thank you all for the information!! cheers
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Re: Existing soil

Post  shannon1 on 8/15/2011, 4:08 am

Glad I could help.Very Happy
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Re: Existing soil

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 8/15/2011, 9:59 am

@weinhkd wrote: I bought the soil that I currently have so I hate to dig it out and start over. I'm currently reading the new SFG book- wish I'd of read it this earlier this spring. Where do I find, "How Strong is Your Backbone?"

Also, a happy welcome aboard from me! I am not going to add much to what has been said because it's pretty much a cut and dry thing. I know "starting over" after investing in what you've done is a pain. However, the system of SFG is pretty finite when it comes to the soil mix.

My suggestion would be to create a completely separate garden...by the book...and compare the two. You can also contribute your knowledge to the non-SFG area of the forum, as well. And, over some time, you can incorporate SFG techniques to your other garden, too.

The issue with using the existing soil, and calling it an SFG, is that we are all lost when it comes to helping you with any kind of issue that may come up. This forum is a great resource of experience with Mel's system. We are all pretty nutty when it comes to SFG. Without building the SFG the book's way, we all get pretty lost (because most of us haven't deviated), and your only hope becomes your local extension office....leading to frustration many times.

Glad to have you. I hope to see you getting more active as time goes by.
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Re: Existing soil

Post  Goosegirl on 8/15/2011, 3:17 pm

Welcome, you desert gardener! Are you in the city or outside of LV a ways? My inlaws are north of Vegas quite a ways, but I understand the challenges with gardening out there and your reluctance to part with that soil you have so lovingly purchased to grow in! Pa-in-law cannot grow anything in his yard without MAJOR fertilizing and amending! Just have faith that with Mels Mix you won't have the problems that you have with the native soil, or even with purchased soil that you will still have to fertilize heavily after the first year or so. With MM you add one trowelful of compost after each sqare is harvested and that is all the replenishment you usually need. The suggestion to use your purchased soil as the bottom layer in a deeper box is a really good one.

GG
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Re: Existing soil

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