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Plantynut  Send Plantynut a private message!




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Posted on Sunday, April 20, 2003 - 05:32 am EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

I attended a workshop presented by perennial expert Douglas Green last month. He advocates the use of compost and says you never have to use fertilizer on perennials. Do you think this is this so?

Arlene Zone 7 Long Island, NY
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Wanda  Send Wanda a private message!




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Posted on Sunday, April 20, 2003 - 10:32 am EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

I would tend to agree with that statement. If you are using compost, you are adding nutrients to the soil which is what you do when you add fertilizer, so why do it twice?
The exceptions would be plants that require special circumstances, such as acidic soil, or high nitrogen feeders, etc.



wanda CA Zone 9b
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Swamprose  Send Swamprose a private message!




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Posted on Sunday, April 20, 2003 - 11:13 am EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

Mine do fine with just compost...and alfalfa meal, leaf mold, manure, coffee grounds, etc., to build up the soil, which I suppose compost alone could do.

Mother Nature never goes to Home Depot to buy fertilizer; she does a wonderful job all by herself allowing fallen leaves to provide nourishment.

SwampRose western Washington zone 8
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Plantynut  Send Plantynut a private message!




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Posted on Sunday, April 20, 2003 - 12:19 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post



Swamprose wrote on Sunday, April 20, 2003 - 09:13 am:

Mother Nature never goes to Home Depot to buy fertilizer




That's very good. Swampy.

I am off to get more compost.

Arlene Zone 7 Long Island, NY
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Euphorbphreak  Send Euphorbphreak a private message!




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Posted on Tuesday, April 22, 2003 - 03:04 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

And as they drill into you again and again, "Feed the soil, not the plants"!

David, the other CA, USDA z9b, Sunset z17
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Plantynut  Send Plantynut a private message!




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Posted on Tuesday, April 22, 2003 - 03:09 pm EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

I have spread 15 huge sacks of compost this week. I need about 8 more and I'm done. I had to take a break today for the rain.

Arlene Zone 7 Long Island, NY
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Kvilledude  Send Kvilledude a private message!




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Posted on Wednesday, April 23, 2003 - 01:25 am EST :   Last Buddysize PhotosCopy highlighted text to new message Print Post

Personally, I do not agree wholeheartedly with the statement that Douglas Green said. That is not to say that I don't think that compost is a good thing, it is just that compost is not a fertilizer. If you do any research on compost, you will see that the nutritional data, ie NPK composition, of compost is rather low. Typically it is less than 1% for any of the three aforementioned constituents. It can be high in many micronutrients however. Any perennials that are heavy feeders such as brugmansias will not perform well if they have to rely solely on compost as food due to their tremendous nutritional needs and the low nutritional content of compost.

This is not to say that compost is bad. I would love to get truck loads of the stuff for all my beds. It does great things as far as increasing the water holding capacity of soil, increasing the humic acid content of the soil, breaking up and areating compacted soil, increasing the microbial processes in the soil that allow locked up nutrients to become available for plant use, and increases the earthworm population in the soil which increases the nutritional composition of the soil due to the earthworm castings. But in of of itself, compost is not a fertilizer, it is a soil amendment.

Kvilledude North Carolina Zone 7
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