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Help with composting

Bradenton, FL(Zone 9a)

Could anybody give me some advice on how to start a compost pile? I don't have very much organic matter that would come from table scraps. So I'd have to use yard clippings and I was wondering if there was anything I could buy from stores to use as a suppliment, like those bags of organic humus. Also, do you cover it or leave it open? How often should you stir a small pile?

Santa Barbara, CA


That is a big order. Try this site which is commercial but has good FAQs and lots of good links:

Here is an article on Lasagna Gardening, otherwise known as sheet composting:

Come back to us later with any questions you might have.

Bradenton, FL(Zone 9a)

Thanks Marsh. I live in FL and there is no soil here, only sand.

Santa Barbara, CA


You definitely need organic material. If you can find some "green sand" (marl), and soft rock phosphate, add that with your organic material for long-term release of Potassium and Phosphorous, respectively.

Mulching is surely going to help along with good compost added with the marl and the soft rock p. Just push aside the decomposing mulch and plant.

Bradenton, FL(Zone 9a)

Can I put the marl and soft rock down before I have compost?
I have a garbage can already that I use for clippings and all the stuff in it turns black. Water in the bottom is also black like used oil.

Troy, VA(Zone 7a)

Look what I found whilst searching for something else!! Isn't that always the way. Hope it helps somewhat, although this is "British" is compost after all no matter where it's 'born'!

Bradenton, FL(Zone 9a)

Thanks, Lousia. I've got alot of reading to do now. Hopefully I can get this to work. My flowers need it, fertilizer just doesn't do it like I'd like.

Lyndeborough, NH

How close to the coast line are you?

I know some folks with ocean frontage, They can't grow anything because of the salt content.

They had to buy loam to grow anything in.

Every major storm that hits them, they have to replace the loam.

Just a what if


Bradenton, FL(Zone 9a)

I'm about 10-15 miles from the Gulf. I'm not sure of the salt content, how do you find that out. Stuff grows here though, it's just that after a certain amount of growth, it seems like alot of leaves fall off. I just moved in this house about 2 1/2 years ago. We've had a drought problem for about three years, I'm sure that has a part in the growth problems. This year seems to be off to a better start. But still I'd like to be able to make compost, every other week I throw out a garbage can full of yard waste.

Lyndeborough, NH

Might be salt, as the roots start to grow deep and then
hit the salt layer.

Basicaly salt would act like your plants were wilting from lack of water.

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