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Mulch nutritional value

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Moose

I have to say that mulching with organic compost has made a huge difference to a part of my garden where the soil was dry sandy and quite shady, the plants are thriving and lots of fungi (mushrooms) growing, it has probably been the best thing I have done for the growth of my garden.

The same is occurring in my garden.

If the nutritional question is referencing NPK and minors quantities, that would be difficult to calculate. Palms planted in a living soil - can't be beat. All those soil microbes have a symbiotic relationship with the roots. Have all the bacteria was wiped out in your stomach, see how your digestion goes.

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Alicehunter2000

This has been a great topic...

2 questions

If mulch breaking down robs the soil of nitrogen and other nutrients then wouldn't it be re-released back into the soil slowly over time.....like giving someone a $100 and getting $1 back for the next 100 days....or does it all go into the atmosphere?

For sandy soils....what about blending some red clay into it?..... Water retention, no robbing nutrients, help with nematodes, possibly adding some mineral content. Red Clay is available 20 miles to the north...would it be worth it to start getting some buckets of it and spreading it around?

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trioderob

for fast growth ?

man made- hands down - and alot of it

here is a tip - fresh bark/ wood chips mulch is bad for palms - but if you add the chips to a composted pile and pure urine into the pile the bark will change its structure in a few weeks.

it wont be broken down to compost but it will be in a much better form to add to the palms

Edited by trioderob

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nomolos

what about a mulch that is a combination of chopped up kelp and plant matter?

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trioderob

the kelp can be turned into a liquid extract that is good.

the plant matter should be "hot composted"

if you don't know how to do that I will explain

in my experiments compost good - mulch bad

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nomolos

the kelp can be turned into a liquid extract that is good.

the plant matter should be "hot composted"

if you don't know how to do that I will explain

in my experiments compost good - mulch bad

Yes please explain hot composted thankyou

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trioderob

hot composting is when you create a cube 3 feet square or larger made of green plant matter and dried brown plant matter.

you add nitrogen and water and within about 3 days the internal temp hits 160F

The mix must be turned to allow the microbes to get oxygen

there numbers grow at an astronomical rate and the plant matter decomposes 100 -500 x faster than normal

after 10 days all the plant matter is decomposed and this compost is added to the palms - when water hits this compost it releases a rich "compost tea" which makes the palms grow at an epic rate

add to this a nice dose of slow release man made fert and you are set -stand BACK AND WATCH THEM GROW

Edited by trioderob
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nomolos

hot composting is when you create a cube 3 feet square or larger made of green plant matter and dried brown plant matter.

you add nitrogen and water and within about 3 days the internal temp hits 160F

The mix must be turned to allow the microbes to get oxygen

there numbers grow at an astronomical rate and the plant matter decomposes 100 -500 x faster than normal

after 10 days all the plant matter is decomposed and this compost is added to the palms - when water hits this compost it releases a rich "compost tea" which makes the palms grow at an epic rate

add to this a nice dose of slow release man made fert and you are set -stand BACK AND WATCH THEM GROW

Thanks Trioderob

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_Keith

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nomolos

Great - I learned also that you guys in the US pronounce compost differently than in Aus

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trioderob

that video is not very good.

here is a few things that are wrong.

1) turn the pile more than every 5 days - the more the better

2) there is no need to buy inoculant- total waste of money

3) the pile does not take weeks - it takes 10 days

4) add used coffee grounds- get them from a large coffee shop like Starbucks

5) urinate into a jug and pour on the pile

6) you don't have to wait 4 works at the end- when the pile no longer gets hot and the worms have moved in - its ready

this stuff I- unlike mulch is real good for the palms- the first time you add it and water a dark compost tea goes into the ground.

you know who else does this ?

the dudes who grow world record vegetables

big-fruit-and-vegetables1.JPG

Edited by trioderob
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nomolos

that video is not very good.

here is a few things that are wrong.

1) turn the pile more than every 5 days - the more the better

2) there is no need to buy inoculant- total waste of money

3) the pile does not take weeks - it takes 10 days

4) add used coffee grounds- get them from a large coffee shop like Starbucks

5) urinate into a jug and pour on the pile

6) you don't have to wait 4 works at the end- when the pile no longer gets hot and the worms have moved in - its ready

this stuff I- unlike mulch is real good for the palms- the first time you add it and water a dark compost tea goes into the ground.

you know who else does this ?

the dudes who grow world record vegetables

big-fruit-and-vegetables1.JPG

My thats a big veggie

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Alicehunter2000

Rob....I strongly disagree. .....I think you should pee directly on the pile and not into a jug first....

That's just gross...lol

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Cosmo

Rob....I strongly disagree. .....I think you should pee directly on the pile and not into a jug first....

That's just gross...lol

Personally I think a 2 liter soda bottle is better since it won't break. Just be sure not to use a Mt. Dew bottle.

As a former Ag teacher I'll get involved in this thread even though it is 5 years old.

For me there are 2 types of mulch. Green mulch which is fresh out of the chipper truck and aged mulch which is green mulch that has been aged and entering the final stages of decomposition about to begin releasing nutrients. Compost can be any organic material from mulch to manure that has reached the end of decomposition, there is virtually no or minimal nutrients available for microorganisms to further decompose the material. Compost is plant nutrient rich while being microorganism nutrient depleted.

Using green mulch without understanding the decomposition cycle will have negative results. To break down the cellulose, the microorganisms need fuel (N) to do their job and remove it from the soil when an alternative source of N is not readily available. Some ammonia sulphate (21-0-0) lightly and periodically sprinkled on green mulch allows it to used immediately on the landscape without fear of being arrested for indecent exposure for peeing on the front landscape.

For the compost pile urine provides the necessary N and moisture for the little critters. Just chunking some 21-0-0 on the pile without rain does nothing. Add water to the mix and maintain an aerobic state will create a pile so hot putting your hand in it will be uncomfortable.

If you have a stubborn stump in your yard you don't need a stump grinder. Carefully carve a decent amount out of the middle, add 21-0-0 and water and watch. Refill with the fert once a month or so and by next season if it isn't all gone what will be left will not be a challenge to any lawn mower.

Edited by Cosmo
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nomolos

www.youtube.com/watch?v=dqkWYM7rYpU

Interesting video about making biochar

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trioderob

those will work.

the faster the compost is produced - the better

just be sure to use coffee grounds and urine - it will work like a charm

remember - it takes 10 - 18 days

do it all in one batch - dont add to it

when done- make a new batch

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_Keith

The title Mulch Nutritional Value is a misnomer right off the bat. While this thread title says mulch, we seem to be talking more compost. They are 2 very different things. The purpose of mulch is not nutrition.

Organic Mulch applied properly ON TOP of the soil and not mixed into the soil will not tie up nitrogen or anything else. OVER TIME, as it decomposes, mulch will become compost and will actually release nitrogen and other mineral elements for plant use. The key here is OVER TIME.

Mulch protects the soil surface and roots beneath by moderating temperature and moisture and suppressing weed seed germination UNDER the mulch. This improved soil condition will allow a healthy soil bioweb to develop. That is its biggest advantage.

Compost, if properly FINISHED, is sometimes mixed into the soil as a soil conditioner, or it can be applied on the surface, sometimes in a thin layer under a layer of mulch. The key here is how much the compost is FINISHED. There are many groups of microbes and cycles that need to happen. If you mix unfinished compost INTO the soil, you could tie up nitrogen and some other elements until the microbial activity dies down.

This is super high level. People write entire books on this subject, but it is really simple for the most part. For those like a more scientific explanation, I post a few pages from an excellent book when I get home from my travels.

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nomolos

those will work.

the faster the compost is produced - the better

just be sure to use coffee grounds and urine - it will work like a charm

remember - it takes 10 - 18 days

do it all in one batch - dont add to it

when done- make a new batch

Thanks Mate

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nomolos

The title Mulch Nutritional Value is a misnomer right off the bat. While this thread title says mulch, we seem to be talking more compost. They are 2 very different things. The purpose of mulch is not nutrition.

Organic Mulch applied properly ON TOP of the soil and not mixed into the soil will not tie up nitrogen or anything else. OVER TIME, as it decomposes, mulch will become compost and will actually release nitrogen and other mineral elements for plant use. The key here is OVER TIME.

Mulch protects the soil surface and roots beneath by moderating temperature and moisture and suppressing weed seed germination UNDER the mulch. This improved soil condition will allow a healthy soil bioweb to develop. That is its biggest advantage.

Compost, if properly FINISHED, is sometimes mixed into the soil as a soil conditioner, or it can be applied on the surface, sometimes in a thin layer under a layer of mulch. The key here is how much the compost is FINISHED. There are many groups of microbes and cycles that need to happen. If you mix unfinished compost INTO the soil, you could tie up nitrogen and some other elements until the microbial activity dies down.

This is super high level. People write entire books on this subject, but it is really simple for the most part. For those like a more scientific explanation, I post a few pages from an excellent book when I get home from my travels.

Thanks Keith the more info the better

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nomolos

Just filled the tumber up with material added coffee grains urine and liquid nitrosol and a bit of seasol

looking forward to the heating

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nomolos

I have started to try and make Bio Char

Getting it ready

IMG_20150625_120404.jpg

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nomolos

Further progress

IMG_20150625_125726.jpg

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nomolos

Just about to light it

IMG_20150625_130335.jpg

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nomolos

On fire :evil:

IMG_20150625_132346.jpg

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nomolos

built up the chimney

IMG_20150625_132519.jpg

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nomolos

After 2 hours I went out with the hose. Heaps of steam came off the pile and did so for a considerable time so I kept watering.

The was practically no ash just charcoal will post some pics tomorrow before I mix it into the compost.

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_Keith

Please consider starting a dedicated thread for your biochar experiments. No problem with doing it in this thread, but it is really cool and I am afraid it will get lost for future readers.

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trioderob

the biochar is something I never added to the compost so I am learning here myself.

:interesting:

Edited by trioderob

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BS Man about Palms

Dang.. Its good I looked here again... I forgot to fertilize... I really should as most of my palms look so pathetic... living on only mulch and clay and occasional water.. :bemused:

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trioderob

they will stay alive that way but the growth rate will only be a fraction of what it could be.

also you stated recently that you lose half of your palms after they flower - that might be why

every palm that I removed wood chip mulch from immediately looked better

Edited by trioderob

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_Keith

I have experimented with biochar/terra preta, hugelcultur, and my latest bed was a combination of both. So far nothing has dropped my jaw in outstanding performance over plain old beds.

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trioderob

you live in an area that is as different weather wise as can be to Cali or Tasmania

that could be a factor also.........

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_Keith

you live in an area that is as different weather wise as can be to Cali or Tasmania

that could be a factor also.........

Yes my climate is certainly different but I think also it takes a few years for most of these techniques to reach a real effectiveness.

It is also important to remember that not all palms want the same conditions.

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nomolos

I forgot to say that it is recommended to inocculate your biochar prior to using in the ground. Adding it to a compost heap is a good way, also soaking it in fish and seaweed emulsion.

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Matt in OC

For those coming to this conversation late, I highly recommend going back to the beginning of this 5 year-old discussion for some fascinating info. It's a long read, but well worth it!

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_Keith

I inoculate all new planting holes with a product named BioRush. Now, It has been a game changer for me with new plantings and transplants. Very noticeable.

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nomolos

Biochar from the fire process above

P1010925.jpg

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