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I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

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I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  jenny-h on 3/31/2010, 11:39 am

I live in 5b (I think). I have my vermiculite, my peat, and my boxes all built, but for the life of me, I CANNOT find 5 different types of compost. I have mushroom, manure, and an organic mix of stuff. That's all I can find anywhere and I've looked at 10 different places. I think I've spent more in gas looking for this stuff than I have in getting everything else. I'm so frustrated right now that I don't know what to do. What makes it worse is that everytime I go some place I have to take my 5-year-old with me so it's a constant question about when are we going home.... HELP!!! I'm losing my sanity over a garden of all things!!!!! I have a bunch of plants that I need to get planted, but can't because I have no dirt to put them in. I'm getting behind on my garden and then I'll have nothing to show for the money I've spent and the time I've put into it so far. Sorry for the rant, but I need help.
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  nidiyao on 3/31/2010, 11:41 am

I personally would just move forward with what you have and as soon as you have compost you've made, add it! Maybe others with more experience have other ideas?

Sandy
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  chocolatepop on 3/31/2010, 11:42 am

haa haa, not laugghing at YOU, but more at my daughter doing the same thing. What i did was just buy different brands from different places. Like Home Depot and Lowes both carry composted manure, but from different brands, so i count those as two, then walmart has a different one than menards (IDK if you have one there) and meijer (same thing). Probably not what I'm supposed to do, but it works.

Also, contact your city dump. i know where my mom and dad live they actually sell the compost from the yard waste you turn in, it is like $20 a truck bed load. Some will even deliver. Or try a farm?
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  Mikesgardn on 3/31/2010, 11:46 am

Five types of compost may be the ideal, but I made my first mix with just one type of store-bought compost. It worked fine. You can always add fertilizer during the growing season if needed. That's what I did.
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  jenny-h on 3/31/2010, 12:02 pm

Thank you for the encouragement. I'm tired and it's spring break for my daughter, but not my husband and I've got spring fever something horrid! I will try the 5 different companies of compost and hope that takes care of it. I've tried Tractor Supply, Meijer, Menards, Walmart, Lowes, Home Depot, Kroger, 2 local nurseries, and a local farm and they either don't carry any or they have the same kind as everyone else. I'm just tired of waiting to plant. My sprouts are doing great inside and I'm ready to take them out.
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  nidiyao on 3/31/2010, 12:08 pm

Hey Jenny, where are you?
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  jenny-h on 3/31/2010, 12:19 pm

Near Dayton, Ohio. So, I have lots of stores to choose from, but they haven't gotten all of their things in yet, I guess.
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  Wild Bill on 3/31/2010, 12:22 pm

Jenny,

I was trying to find some chicken manure to put in mine, but couldn't find any. So I decided to use one large bag of Miracle Grow's organic mix. It has some chicken manure in it, plus composted pine bark and some peat.

I was also able to find some organic humus (sp?) from ACE Hardware of all places...

But I like what chocolatepop mentioned.. if you can't find different TYPES of compost, then just use different brands to get you there. I think the mushroom compost is some great stuff... so is the Black Kow brand for cow/steer manure.

My mix consisted of:

1.5 cu feet Miracle Grow Organic Mix
2 cu feet of Mushroom Compost (Lowes)
1.5 cu feet Black Kow compost
1 cu feet Pine bark compost
1 cu feet Organic Humus
1 cu feet Organic Compost (Vegetable and plants composted)

Then I added my 8 cu feet of coarse vermiculite, and 7-8 cu feet of Peat moss. Mixed it all at once with a shovel and it about killed me. lol I'll try and mix smaller amounts next time. lol

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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  castoral on 3/31/2010, 12:40 pm

I'm actually in Dayton as well....south of town in Centerville. I've been having a lot of trouble finding compost as well. My first suggestion....CALL BEFORE DRIVING! I have a 2 yr old and a 10 mo old and my husband ownes a landscape company (so needless to say, can't help me with the kids right now), so I call everywhere to make sure it's not going to be a wasted trip.

Last night I managed to get two kinds of compost at Ace Hardware (the one on Clyo Rd in Centerville). The brand is called GreenThumb. They have mushroom compost and cow manure, so I got 4 bags of each at $3.99 a bag. Then we were lucky that we had about 4 cu ft of our own compost...which I put all kinds of stuff in, but mostly grass clippings and leaves. Then the other two "kinds" I was going to use is the Meijer in West Carollton I found organic hummus compost, or something like that (far back corner). They also carried another kind of cow manuer I believe. But I was going to try the Miracle Grow mix. It said it had chicken manue in it, among other things, so I thought it would be good.

We are already on the search for fresh chicken manuer to mix in our compost for next year though. Horse manuer is pretty easy to come by around our house. (SugarCreek Reserve has stables you can get it at for free usually). Hopefully next year my compost will be good enough that I won't have to worry about this.

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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  nancy on 3/31/2010, 12:49 pm

Jenny - I just got 2 more bags of mushroom compost last night at Ace Hardware in Cincinnati. It was more expensive than what castoral paid (mine was $7.49 a bag), but it's really good stuff. And I figure different cow composts come from different cows that eat different things, so I counted it as different kinds.
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  castoral on 3/31/2010, 1:01 pm

Should have mentioned, mine was $3.99 for a 40 lbs bag.

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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  swripley on 3/31/2010, 1:07 pm

I have nothing add regarding compost sources that hasn't already been mentioned (great advice all). I just wanted to say "Hang in there Jenny-H!" If I was anywhere near Ohio I would offer to babysit.
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  SFG in Chicago on 3/31/2010, 1:42 pm

Hi Jenny,
I'm in Northern Illinois (near Chicago) and I had the same trouble finding a variety of compost. Mushroom compost and humus and some manure is all I found. I think the problem is the garden centers here haven't really gotten started yet. Kind of exasperating because how are you supposed to get your beds ready ahead of time if they don't start stocking this stuff until it's time to plant! This is all new for me because I lived in South Florida my whole life where supplies are available year round & the garden centers never close! I say go with what you can find, it'll be ok.


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I'm ready to give up!

Post  Bec on 3/31/2010, 1:52 pm

Won't we ALL be glad when Mel's Mix is in the stores!!!! I can hardly wait!

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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  timwardell on 3/31/2010, 2:41 pm

Hang in there. IMHO it would be better to make your mix with the 3 types of compost that you have and get your plants in the ground. Then if/when you find some other types of compost in the future you can just add a handful to this square, a little to that square, etc. Over the summer you will have added the additional nutrients from the various compost without all the stress. Yes, Mel recommends 5 types of compost, but he also says, "We aren't baking a cake" meaning that strict adherence to the recipe is not required and being a bit off on the ingredients is okay.
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  Miss Mousie on 3/31/2010, 2:56 pm

I had trouble finding different kinds of compost too. I was able to find chicken manure and steer manure at Lowe's but no mushroom compost or anything exotic like that. I ended up getting two kinds of mixed compost in addition to the chicken and steer manure. I also only found medium coarse vermiculite so I'm pretty much going with that in addition to the peat that I picked up. I might try the feed store in town and the nursery in the next town over for another compost but that will be it, I'm going for it.

Good Luck with your garden, I'm sure it will be fine.
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  jenny-h on 3/31/2010, 3:01 pm

Thank you all for the great suggestions. I apologize for my "drama queening" at the beginning. I was tired of running around. And I usually call before I go places, but I've had to be out for other things too, so I thought I'd stop at these places to see what they had. I just kind of hit a wall earlier this morning. After all the great suggestions, I'm feeling much more relaxed and excited again! I'm going to get my mix done tonight whether I have 5 composts or not. I still need to get a couple more feet to finish up my boxes, bu soon I'll be planting away and playing in the dirt again! Yippee!!

I did call my local dump and they do make their own compost from lawn and garden clippings that people bring there. I may get some of that once they open for the season, so I'm going to take all of your wonderful ideas, pull myself up out of my pity party and have fun again. I'm so glad to have found this group! Thanks again!
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  swripley on 3/31/2010, 3:11 pm

You go girl!
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  bpbdrummer on 3/31/2010, 3:25 pm

dont sweat it, I used 2 different manure composts and mushroom compost, the plants are just fine and as long as they have good, well drained soil they really dont care if you mix one or twenty different composts.

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don't give up!!!

Post  SirTravers on 3/31/2010, 3:30 pm

Don't worry about mushroom compost if you can't find it. I got a bag of composted cottonseed hulls at my local garden center. I've got a friend with horses so I'm using composted horse manure a little bit...check with any local stables. I'm sure they'd give you all the manure you'd take off their hands. Also check with your local Freecycle group
I'm sure if you put a wanted message on your local freecycle group someone will have some compost or materials for you to compost yourself.


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Hang in there!

Post  argardener on 3/31/2010, 9:25 pm

I too have spring fever terrribly. I'm in zone 7 and can only find manure compost, so I just bought some from different stores. I have a neighbor with chickens & goats and 2 neighbors with horses, think I'll pay them a visit.

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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  mckr3441 on 4/6/2010, 10:36 am

Hi Jenny, How's it going? We're eager to get the next chapter. Are your boxes filed with soil yet? Have you put any plants out? Or seeds?

I'm thinking of you.
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  martha on 4/6/2010, 11:21 am

Hmmm, I thought I had replied earlier this morning, but it disappeared.

In my opinion, if you are so frustrated that you are feeling like giving up, this is the first and best place for you to come. Misery won't last long in this company!
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using horse manure

Post  ander217 on 4/6/2010, 4:30 pm

@SirTravers wrote: I've got a friend with horses so I'm using composted horse manure a little bit...check with any local stables. I'm sure they'd give you all the manure you'd take off their hands.

A few years ago we spread horse manure on our garden from a neighbor's barn. He told us it was composted. We learned too late it had not been properly composted. We introduced pigweeds and other weeds all over the garden, and someone later told us that the manure contained dewormer and fly control products which could contaminate our garden. We also learned that we should have worn gloves at all times when working with the uncomposted manure because there is a very slight risk that tetanus can be transferred from manure to an open cut.

The moral of the story is, - have better sense than we did. Do your own composting if you pick up local manure. Our neighbor thought because the manure had been piled up in his pasture for a few months it was completely composted, but it would have taken much longer for it to break down properly. Also check with the stable and see what types of chemicals and medications may have been used on the horses, and whether composting breaks them down into harmless compounds.
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

Post  donnainzone5 on 4/7/2010, 10:34 am

I read somewhere that gardeners should have tetanus shots about every five years, rather than 10. I follow this advice.
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Re: I'm ready to give up!!!!!!!!!

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