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Avatar for mheidi
Jun 10, 2017 5:26 PM CST
Thread OP
Asheville, NC
I have a new garden that was a pasture until recently. I had it plowed deeply, and rototilled twice, and I'm ready to plant. I am not able to afford to buy compost right now, so I would like to plant and then later on, put the compost on top of the soil. Will it still help the plants if it is not tilled in, but just on top? I am hoping it will also help insulate the soil from the summer heat as well. Any advice would be much appreciated.
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Jun 10, 2017 6:54 PM CST
Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
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Hi and welcome! Yes, the compost will gradually work its way down into the soil as you are watering your garden. It's commonly called "top dressing".

You might want to also mulch on top of the compost with something like hay or straw though. It will insulate the soil from the sun and heat better than your compost will. It also protects the soil and compost from erosion by heavy rain which can be a big deal in summer storms. Then at the end of the season you can till it under for more good organic amendment to the soil for next year.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." โ€“Winston Churchill
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Jun 11, 2017 4:33 AM CST
Name: Tiffany purpleinopp
Opp, AL @--`--,----- ๐ŸŒน (Zone 8b)
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Mother nature never tills OM into the soil. You can't get a better example than that.

A 15-min lecture on microbiology that can help you drastically change the life of your garden:
https://permaculturenews.org/2...
The golden rule: Do to others only that which you would have done to you.
๐Ÿ‘€๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜‚ - SMILE! -โ˜บ๐Ÿ˜Žโ˜ปโ˜ฎ๐Ÿ‘ŒโœŒโˆžโ˜ฏ
The only way to succeed is to try!
๐Ÿฃ๐Ÿฆ๐Ÿ”๐Ÿฏ๐Ÿพ๐ŸŒบ๐ŸŒป๐ŸŒธ๐ŸŒผ๐ŸŒน
The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The 2nd best time is now. (-Unknown)
๐Ÿ‘’๐ŸŽ„๐Ÿ‘ฃ๐Ÿก๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿ‚๐ŸŒพ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿโฆโง๐Ÿ๐Ÿ‚๐ŸŒฝโ€โ˜€ โ˜•๐Ÿ‘“๐Ÿ
Try to be more valuable than a bad example.
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Jun 11, 2017 5:12 AM CST
Name: Sue Taylor
Northumberland, UK
Amaryllis Region: United Kingdom Houseplants Frogs and Toads Foliage Fan I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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Yes worms etc will gradually pull down the top layer of compost, top dressing is fine.
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Jun 11, 2017 9:00 AM CST
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
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Yes, simply spread the compost around the plants. I never till my compost in. And I agree with Elaine about using mulch.
Avatar for mheidi
Jun 11, 2017 6:48 PM CST
Thread OP
Asheville, NC
Thanks everyone for the great responses! I feel confident about putting the compost on top, and I will till it in at the end of the season.

Is there a way to mark this question as answered?

Thanks,
Last edited by mheidi Jun 11, 2017 6:50 PM Icon for preview
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Jun 12, 2017 7:47 AM CST
Name: Tiffany purpleinopp
Opp, AL @--`--,----- ๐ŸŒน (Zone 8b)
Region: United States of America Houseplants Overwinters Tender Plants Indoors Garden Sages Plant Identifier Garden Ideas: Level 2
Organic Gardener Composter Miniature Gardening Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Tender Perennials Butterflies
I strongly, vehemently, strenuously, vigorously, thoroughly, sincerely must urge, compel, encourage, request, yearn, and downright beg you to please not till later. It will destroy the work of the microbes, many of the larger critters that perform an important function, and, more importantly, the drainage. More details in the vid I linked.
The golden rule: Do to others only that which you would have done to you.
๐Ÿ‘€๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜‚ - SMILE! -โ˜บ๐Ÿ˜Žโ˜ปโ˜ฎ๐Ÿ‘ŒโœŒโˆžโ˜ฏ
The only way to succeed is to try!
๐Ÿฃ๐Ÿฆ๐Ÿ”๐Ÿฏ๐Ÿพ๐ŸŒบ๐ŸŒป๐ŸŒธ๐ŸŒผ๐ŸŒน
The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The 2nd best time is now. (-Unknown)
๐Ÿ‘’๐ŸŽ„๐Ÿ‘ฃ๐Ÿก๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿ‚๐ŸŒพ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿโฆโง๐Ÿ๐Ÿ‚๐ŸŒฝโ€โ˜€ โ˜•๐Ÿ‘“๐Ÿ
Try to be more valuable than a bad example.
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