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Mulching 101

Post in 'The Green Room' started by smokinj, Oct 25, 2011.

  1. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    Ok I got a 4 foot cube made of chicken wire. I know you throw the old garden plants in there. I am also using the chicken bedding and leaves. What else is good? What else should I be doing. Composter only been in for a few weeks.

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  2. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    I put the plants right back into the ground. Mow em and till em. Composter gets everything from the kitchen other than meat. 1 gallon plaster bucket is about right for us. Coffee, egg shells, veggies, it all goes in there.
  3. laynes69

    laynes69 Minister of Fire

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    When I had a large pile, I mulched leaves, manure, garden scraps, etc. I mixed in small amounts of water and layered grass, and manure (greens) with the leaves (browns). When there's that right amount or blend of green and browns the pile will start to heat. Then turn the pile over add some moisture and within no time it will compost. If you want to wait then you can add as you go and let time take care of it. To make any heat, the pile must be fairly large. Too many greens and it will stink and rot, too much brown and it wont do much. I always added a little soil from the garden to help things. It's amazing how hot a pile can reach. I like to do it this way to kill any stray weed seeds. I would like to eventually have a large pile, but I haven't had time to collect, which is the reason for the cover crop.
  4. fishingpol

    fishingpol Minister of Fire

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    Laynes nailed it. More carbon such as leaves and paper, than nitrogen greens (veg and fruit scraps). I was having problems with my composter until I added dead leaves and shredded paper.

    http://www.composting101.com/c-n-ratio.html
  5. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    I got the cover crop. Guess my big issue is a rail road went through my garden for 125 year. lol Thats what I am up against, so game on and got to do it way above par for at-least a couple years. 4000 sqft how much compost should be added?
  6. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    I did 28 yards on top of my glacial till this year and I don't think it was too much.
  7. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    What size?
  8. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    Composted area was about 4000 sq ft. I don't think you can generate too much.
  9. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    I got a guy...lol Will be a couple monster truck loads of leaves mulch and grass cliplings. Sounds like thats a done deal.
  10. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    No dairy farms nearby?
  11. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    My cousin has a large one about 25 miles away.
  12. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    Why not have him windrow enough chit to make you forget about the railroad history on your property?
  13. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    I never put the puzzle together until now. Hes got bobcats around and can load me up in seconds.....My uncle that lives next to him has a zoo. Any better crap out there? lol
  14. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    Be careful, that chit is heavy. It is how I found the bad weld on my little dump trailer. I planted right in the the 2 year windrowed stuff from my buddies farm, no mixing with soil required.
  15. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    Jay,

    Those chickens are your compost pile. Feed them anything organic that didn't have a mother (no meat, although they would eat it I'm sure). Egg shells, coffee grinds, fruit peels, garden plants, EVERYTHING. Cuts down on the feed bill and makes excellent compost/fertilizer. Makes the chicken taste better too!

    I you have access to cow manure, let it sit for a couple years and there's your soil improver. I wouldn't mess with the traditional compost heap if you have chickens and a cow lot available....just extra work IMO. The only prob with cow manure is it has a ton of seeds in it, so it tends to generate a lot of weeds in the garden. Letting it sit and cook for a while takes care of a lot of that, but not all...so be prepared to run the tiller a little extra in the spring.
  16. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    I agree. We compost everything and while it feels good it doesn't put a dent in a big garden.
  17. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    I needed something to kinda keep it in a pile. Winds will blow the small stuff to the next county. Never had to pick up any leaves out here! :lol:
  18. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    A rail-road tie bin is the way to go...

    ------------------------
    |
    | Compost goes here
    |
    ------------------------

    3 ties high, one tie long, one tie in the back.
  19. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    I like it.
  20. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    Build it in such a way the d@mn dog can't get in it.
  21. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    I only have one of those and she runs right past it! :lol:
  22. CTYank

    CTYank Minister of Fire

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    Sawdust and noodles are good stuff to throw in, long as you keep the nitrogen up with chicken/cow manure, the C/N ratio.
    Sounds like you've no problem with that part.
    Keep piles loose enough to have airflow getting in there; don't want to get into anaerobic digestion.
  23. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    What are you using to turn it pitch fork?
  24. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    lol, as soon as I had the pit bull my wife rescued from the side of the interstate collar trained, she went right for the compost pile. Wasn't pretty. Sucked it up and got a composter just to keep her out of it.
  25. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    Thanks lol. I do have it gated. She use it to make her 90 degree break for it like we cant see her or something.

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