super compost

pnbrownFebruary 11, 2013

Hi folks,

Just thought I would update y'all on some things we have learned in the past few years in attempting to improve florida sand soil for vegetable production.

For years we have hauled mushroom compost from the plant in zellwood. Results were never great, and only lasted for a season or two at most. We learned that the mushroom compost is microbially dead and has little or no nutrients in it.

Last year we discovered azomite and south GA-source humate, which I have added to a variety of areas, some that had mushroom compost in it, others not, such as around citrus trees which from one application have greatly improved flavor in the fruit as well as greatly increased flowering now and good flush-out of new leaves on some trees and much less black spot on the leaves.

Also we started a new garden near a lake, a year ago, using humates and azomite in the sand (along with a little very old mushroom compost because we had no other OM at that time). Results were pretty good, no nematode problems, much better production than ever before. At other drier sites legume production with zero irrigation has been successful. Azomite appears to considerably increase drought tolerance in crops, so far IME.

In the process of buying bulk amounts of these materials recently, we discovered someone who makes compost in bulk, from woody materials and amended with the azomite and young humate. We got some of that as well. We potted up some tomatoes in it and plants have tripled in size in the last two weeks. We got six yards of it and put a thick bed of it right on top of the lawn, I dug down there the other day and after two weeks the sod is completely rotted out.

If anyone is interested in the name and location of the compost-maker, send me a message. I don't stand to gain from this, I simply think that people could with one haul and modest expense create a long-term production garden without having to constantly add low-quality box store materials and/or be confined to grow-boxes with their very small output.

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Do you know the composition of the woody materials to azomite to young humate in the bulk compost?

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 10:23PM
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JD, he says its 3% azomite and 3% humate. Based on results so far that seems to be a good proportion. The OM is well-broken down for the most part, though of course there are plenty of small chunks of wood and twigs, etc. Unavoidably there is sand in the mix, I would estimate maybe 30 percent or so by volume. As well the presence of the sand means it can be used straight up to fill beds and pots without having to mix sand into it, which is the intent.

For those wanting to convert large areas to growing ground it makes a lot more sense to apply the azomite and humate directly and use local sources of OM. After some time the desired results should be achieved.

BTW, some of you who have emailed me, your settings don't allow me to reply, so email me outside of GW:

    Bookmark   February 12, 2013 at 12:09PM
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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

I think I am going to buy a bulk ton of Azomite so if anyone in the Citrus county area is interested in going in on it drop me an email.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2013 at 12:57PM
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Are you using additional fertilizer of any kind or is the azomite and humate sufficient?

How far from Gainesville is your compost with humate/azomite supplier?


    Bookmark   February 14, 2013 at 11:59AM
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I use urine when I'm around for N. Otherwise just what I have described.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2013 at 1:59PM
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Joe, send me a message because I don't think it's appropriate to post the info here on the forum.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2013 at 2:01PM
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OK....Im me at:

Is it the same place you were telling me of before on another post? Anyhow.... will make a trip up there next week.....

triple the size in a week? WOW!!

    Bookmark   February 14, 2013 at 11:01PM
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about two weeks.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2013 at 5:16PM
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email sent,pbeesky.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2013 at 9:58AM
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