Where to find CGM and can I use horse feed as a substitute?

SD_GatorJuly 28, 2012

I'm new to organic and am ready to start, but I'm having a really hard time finding sources of CGM or other high-protein grain meals.

I've been to two feed stores, and called around to a few others, and the first question they ask is what is it typically used to feed. I've got no idea...does anyone know the answer to that? Also, one store did have CGM...$39 for a 50 pound bag. That can't be right...

Anyway, one guy told me that horse feed might work. He showed me a 50# bag of horse feed that is 12% protein, and its around $16 per bag. Here is the dietary analysis. He said it has oats and grains and some molasses and calcium. Along with a bunch of vitamins.

Is this stuff okay to use? Here's a link to the product:


Crude Protein Min. 12.0%

Lysine Min. 0.55%

Methionine Min. 0.25%

Threonine Min. 0.45%

Crude Fat Min. 6.0%

Crude Fiber Max. 15.0%

Calcium (Min. 0.8%) Max. 1.1%

Phosphorus Min. 0.7%

Copper Min. 45 PPM

Selenium Min. 0.6 PPM

Zinc Min. 135 PPM

Vitamin A Min. 4,300 IU/lb

Vitamin D Min. 400 IU/lb

Vitamin E Min. 75 IU/lb

Biotin Min. 0.45 MG/lb

Dietary Starch Max. 20.0%

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Even though Corn Gluten Meal is a byproduct of the industry it is not inexpensive and that price is at the low end of what I have found. CGM is most often used by gardeners as a pre emergent "weed" control even though it does provide nutrients.
What does your soil need?
Have you had a good, reliable soil test done?
What is your soils pH?
How much organic matter is in your soil?
What kind of life is in that soil?
How well does that soil drain"
How does that soil retain moisture?

    Bookmark   July 29, 2012 at 8:00AM
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I'm not sure the answer to a lot of those questions. I've got bermuda grass and have been following the bermuda bible for a few months now. I've been poking around in a few different forums, and I read this thread:

The poster at the end of the thread recommended CGM among other grains for bermuda due to the higher protein content.

The soil I've got is a fairly dense clay. I had to rent a jackhammer to dig some postholes a while back!! I've been applying BL lawn conditioner to soften up the lawn, and its been working fairly well. Spots that were previously fairly sparse are starting to get grass filled in.

I haven't done a soil test yet, so I don't know how much organic matter, or what deficiencies it has. Since its so late in the season I was going to wait until the start of the next growing season to get a soil test done.

However, I can say its a white, chalky soil when its dry, so I'm not expecting large amounts of organic matter in the soil. I was hoping the by spraying hummates and kelp help I would get enough microbes started to begin breaking down organic fertilizers. Is that a wrong assumption?

Also, the FAQ stated $3-$5 for 50 pound bags of various feed grains. Is that not true anymore? What is a good ballpark to expect to pay for different types of fertilizer?

    Bookmark   July 29, 2012 at 11:14PM
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I am not sure why so many think the time to have a soil test done is just before the growing season because that does not give you enough time to make the needed corrections. Have a good, reliable soil test done now because of your soils pH needs correction it can take several months for that to happen and putting down the amendments to make those corrections is best done several monhts before you want that soil corrected.
Then, too, adding organic materials to soils is best done several months ahead of when yuo want the nutrients in those materials available to the plants since it can take the Soil Food Web some time to do that.
Testing soil in early spring can also give false indications since the Soil Food Web may not be very active yet which is one reason why soil tesitng labs seldom test for Nitrogen now, the soil bacteria are not active and making the N available to the plants, yet.
How old is that FAQ? I hae not seen feed grain prices that low in several years.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2012 at 7:29AM
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I don't see a date on the FAQ...its the one from this forum, though: http://faq.gardenweb.com/faq/lists/organic/2004020829016580.html

I'll go ahead and do that soil test now. What you said totally makes sense.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2012 at 11:11AM
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dchall_san_antonio(8 San Antonio)

I published the FAQ in 2003. At that time $5 was outrageous for a bag of ordinary corn. I was paying $2.99 to $3.99.

CGM is used as a protein supplement for cattle. Feed lots buy it by the truckload to mix with other grains.

Horse pellets should be fine but they are not the high protein stuff like CGM. What you found was likely labeled for use on lawns as a preemergent. That raises the price considerably over the plain brown bag price. So does shipping.

Where do you live?

    Bookmark   July 31, 2012 at 8:28PM
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I'm just north of you in Austin.

I've had folks offer to order it for me, but they needed to know what kind of animal it is used to feed, which I didn't know. I'll try again at the feed store asking for it as a cattle supplement.

    Bookmark   August 2, 2012 at 2:26PM
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I just found a place with 40 pound bags of CGM for $35. I know corn prices have gone up, but that seems pretty high!!

    Bookmark   August 2, 2012 at 2:37PM
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dchall_san_antonio(8 San Antonio)

Anything in a 40-pound bag is usually labeled as a fertilizer and will cost more. Stuff in 50-pound bags is labeled for feed and will cost less. I had been buying CGM for $32.50 all last year in 50-pound bags. Price of corn is down now so it should be less. And I did have to drive 20 miles to get it.

You might have to call feed stores as far away as Georgetown to the north, Wimberley, San Marcos, and/or Bastrop. If you find Ful-O-Pep Feeds, they bag it and can get you some without extra shipping.

    Bookmark   August 2, 2012 at 2:53PM
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Bryan Scott

Dchall, you think there is a way to start a sticky thread like you did on "another forum" where we can list all the places we go to get things like this? See my list on your "other forum".

SD_Gator, I too am in Austin. Cheapest place I have found to buy anything in bulk is at Callaghan's Feed and Pet Supply in Cedar Park, just off Old 183. This IS NOT the same as Callaghan's General Store. It's a small warehouse on a side street, but they are waaaaaay cheaper than any of the local nurseries. For example, last time I got cgm from them it was around $24/bag. At a local nursery it was $45/bag. It get CM (not cgm) for fungus control from them for $15/50lb bag. It's $25/bag at local nurseries. If you're up near NW Austin/Cedar Park area, look them up and give them a call.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2012 at 12:15PM
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Cool!! I'm actually in Leander, so that's right around the corner from me. I'll swing by Monday on my way home from work.


    Bookmark   August 4, 2012 at 11:44PM
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dchall_san_antonio(8 San Antonio)

This forum is a custom design developed by a guy named Spike back in the late 1990s. When iVillage took over, they stopped development. As far as I know, stickies are impossible in this forum. Also, without a well known moderator in the forum, it is impossible to get a FAQ published. I got the FAQ into the Organic Forum because CaptaincompostAL was the moderator at the time. He may still be an official moderator.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 1:00AM
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