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Thread: Feeding the soil

  1. #1
    annie8 is online now Tuber
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    Default Feeding the soil

    Am wondering if I need to buy mushroom compost or similar this year. We built our raised beds in 2017 and bought tons of topsoil (with 30% compost). The garden was very neglected and overgrown and doubt had been given any feed for decades. I added mushroom compost to the beds for the last 2years along with any compost I produce myself. Iíve added the compost to some beds over the last few months at the point where they are clear or when i have been preparing for crops - like the garlic I put in in autumn. As it stands I have no compost that has broken down enough to be added to the beds, might possibly have a bit of compost ready by April. So am debating whether I need to buy mushroom compost to add to the beds that havenít had any feeding since last spring. The top soil is in a decent state now and seems pretty healthy now. Donít want to spend more money than I have to. What do you think? How much feeding do you give your soil?

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    bario1 is online now Work in progress...
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    If the structure of the soil is still good, i'd just fork in some pelleted chicken manure or blood, fish & bone. Do it now, and it'll have broken down nicely into the soil by planting time. Buying fresh compost every year to top up beds would just be too expensive if you ask me, i only use it for pots, it all ends up on the beds at the end of the season anyway when i clear all the pots out.
    He-Pep!

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    I just remembered, my one exception to this rule is I buy re-shredded mushroom compost for my brassica bed every year and spread that over it as a thick mulch, maybe 2 to 3" thick... it adds a bit of lime to the soil, as well as being a good conditioner.
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    nickdub is offline Early Fruiter
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    Might be a good idea to do a test for alkalinity on your soil - mushroom compost can be very limey sometimes.
    Chippy Minton likes this.

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    If it's for mulching, try straw.
    If it's to feed the soil and/or no dig, know anyone with well rotted manure? And straw will do that too...Basically any old topping will do it if it's organic [in the sense of being plant based or herbivore based waste]
    veggiechicken and Snoop Puss like this.

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    Welcome back, taff.
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    Make 2019 the Year of Random Seed sowing
    All we are saying is..........Give seeds a chance.
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    Personally I wouldn't spend any more money trying to improve your soil until you've tried it out this year. If you get an excess of leafy growth in certain veg then it's got too much nitrogen. If the leaves look a bit pale then you need chicken manure or similar to add nitrogen. Dr. Hessayon's or RHS books are very informative and have pictures of various leaf problems that are down to wither an excess or lack of nutrients.
    KevinM67 likes this.
    I work very hard so please don't expect me to think as well!

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