compost - Knowledgebase Question

westchester, Il
Question by donald_eck
May 13, 2009
A I plan to use compost to soften the soil. Is this o.k?
B What is compost?
C How much do I use per square yard?
D Suggestions on mixing it in?
E What can happen if too much used?
F Is Moo Manure a compost?

Answer from NGA
May 13, 2009


Any organic matter that you dig into your soil will help enrich the soil, loosen it and help it hold moisture. You can continue to enrich your soil over a period of years and end up with rich garden loam if you add organic matter. Start this spring by removing all vegetation from the area and spreading 4-5 inches of organic matter over the planting bed. You can use compost, aged manure (fresh manure can be too hot and might contain weed seeds), shredded leaves or whatever organic matter is readily available in your local area. Dig or till this organic matter into the soil - 8-10 inches deep. Plant your flowers or veggies and mulch over the bare soil between the plants with additional organic matter. A 2-3 inch layer will help suppress weeds and slow water evaporation. At the end of the season dig the organic matter into the soil and add a fresh layer. Repeat this process annually and you'll end up with rich garden loam - and a spectacular garden.

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