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Author Topic: Compost in EB  (Read 827 times)
CptnCook
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Posts: 2


« on: July 25, 2011, 11:26:40 AM »

Hi, new guy here.

I have been using EBs for about 4 years and have been using a commercial potting mix. I have been wondering about using my own screened compost instead of the potting mix. Has anyone on the forum tried it? I would like to get more trace minerals in my veggies.
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cushman350
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« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2011, 12:17:03 PM »

http://www.earthbox.com/resources/approved-growing-media/

"You should also avoid using topsoil or compost."

The number one key requirement of an Earthbox potting media is proper wicking, not necessarily feeding. When you alter its wicking properties things usually start going down hill. It is not like growing in the ground where you can add these things and not affect the water uptake. That said, they are your EBs and you can do or try whatever you want to with them. Earthbox has researched these things and found them to be a problem.
« Last Edit: July 25, 2011, 12:19:16 PM by cushman350 » Logged
Donald1800
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Posts: 1542

Fontana, CA Zone 8


« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2011, 02:20:40 PM »

Compost will make the media hold too much moisture for most crops (except celery), becoming more bog-like with increased compost.  There are several finely screened seabed derived mineral soil amendments that can provide a broad range of minerals, and earthworm castings work well in EB's.  My recommendation is to start a small "Earthworm Factory" containing several 1 sq. ft. trays and mix your compost AND seabed mineral amendments and let the earthworms 'process' it, and use the castings in the EB's.

Donald1800
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Perky
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Posts: 205

Bedford, VA; USDA Zone 7A


« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2011, 03:50:30 PM »

Compost will make the media hold too much moisture for most crops (except celery), becoming more bog-like with increased compost.  There are several finely screened seabed derived mineral soil amendments that can provide a broad range of minerals, and earthworm castings work well in EB's.  My recommendation is to start a small "Earthworm Factory" containing several 1 sq. ft. trays and mix your compost AND seabed mineral amendments and let the earthworms 'process' it, and use the castings in the EB's.

Donald1800

Donald1800 - I did a quick Google search on "seabed derived mineral soil amendment" and found some articles on it, but nothing that seemed to be an actual product.  I too have thought that adding trace mineral and elements to the planting media or fertilizer would be a good thing for the health of the plants.  But I am stumped as to how to do that.  Do you have any specific suggestions with respect mineral soil amendments - that wouldn't need an earthworm factory for the casings?

Thank you.
Perky
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Donald1800
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Posts: 1542

Fontana, CA Zone 8


« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2011, 05:28:06 PM »

Glauconite Potash (Green Sand) is one (http://www.groworganic.com/greensand-50-lb.html), and Azomite is another  (http://www.azomite.com/) and   (http://www.groworganic.com/azomite-44-lb-micronized.html).

Donald1800
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CptnCook
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Posts: 2


« Reply #5 on: July 27, 2011, 04:48:52 PM »

Thanks all. I will save my compost for the garden.
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Perky
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Posts: 205

Bedford, VA; USDA Zone 7A


« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2011, 04:38:14 PM »

Glauconite Potash (Green Sand) is one (http://www.groworganic.com/greensand-50-lb.html), and Azomite is another  (http://www.azomite.com/) and   (http://www.groworganic.com/azomite-44-lb-micronized.html).

Donald1800

Thank you, Donald1800.  It is good to have some sources.  But what I can't figure out is whether these are supposed to go into the planting media in the beginning along with the dolomite, or into the fertilizer, or whether then be be applied as a foliar spray.  Any thoughts?

I spoke with one of my Organic Master Gardener friends recently about adding / applying micronutrients to my EarthBox plants, and he said he uses something called Maxicrop (http://www.maxicrop.com/)on his raised bed plants. 

I was wondering whether any of the experienced Master Gardeners out there (Kathy, John, GardenDoc) has any experience with or suggestions or thoughts about applying additional micronutrients either in the planting medial or through a foliar spray.

Thanks,
Perky
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Donald1800
Hero Member
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Posts: 1542

Fontana, CA Zone 8


« Reply #7 on: July 28, 2011, 06:01:21 PM »

The mineral supplements like powdered Green Sand and Azomite should be mixed into the media just like Dolomite, not with the fertilizer, and for all of the same reasons - even distribution and equal availability to all roots while the minerals are slowly extracted by moisture, bacteria, and earthworms if available.

Donald1800
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