compost pile with steam coming out....
There are many forms of organic matter. Untreated sawdust, aged
horse manure, and aged wood are common amendments and can
be found anywhere. Aged wood soil conditioner, cocoa bean, mushroom compost, rice hulls or apple pumice are usually available regionally. Organic waste from
your kitchen can be used to compost your soil as well as additions of rock dust.
Other amendments are: leaf mold, pine bark and bark chips,
straw, sand, coffee grounds, grass clippings, shredded cardboard, bat guano,
eggshells, grapefruit skins, potato skins, and wood chips and ashes.
Organic matter should be added to your soil before you start a
new lawn. You should do this when the weather is fairly settled, so the
ground will be prime for planting and the new grass will
have only mild competition from weeds. The Best Organic matter to add is
in the form of Compost. See chapter on compost.
Soil, in order to be alive, must
have high organic matter, drainage and good structure.
Natural fertilizers add to the
soil, improving its fertility, maintaining and contributing to the improvement of these
Organic matter and rock powders
form the basis of organic fertilizers, and benefit the soil as well as the plant. As a
rule, chemical fertilizers are not a complete plant food.
Organic material contains
nutrients which provide the microorganisms in the soil with the materials they need to be
Organic Fertilizer mixes usually
contain composted animal manure, plant residues, seaweed and fish products, and minerals
(bone and blood meal, cottonseed meal, granite dust, phosphate rock and greensand).
Organic Fertilizers should be used
in combination with compost in order to develop rich, humus soil.
Composting is practiced today just
as it was hundreds or thousands of years ago.
The recirculation of dead matter
into life is a part of nature's program of soil rejuvenation.
A gardener's compost heap is a
process that is going on eternally in nature. When we cut the grass and remove it we are
cutting off the cycle. Therefore compost, when added back to the lawn, re-establishes the
cycle and returns nutrients and bacteria to the soil. The gardener takes a tip from nature
and uses this simple method to build the soil's fertility.
"Compost is the Finest Natural Fertilizer there is"
The Invisible Gardener
Among the manure of other farm
animals, horse manure is one of the most valuable.
It is as rich in nitrogen as
either cow or hog manure, and ferments much more quickly,
therefore being referred to as
Manure provides organic matter and
trace minerals to the soil.
Your lawn will benefit by having a
thin layer of aged (at least 6 months old) horse manure spread over it (using a manure
spreader), and then watered well.
This should be done twice per year
or even seasonally if you can do it.
This practice will also benefit
the microbes as well as the beneficial insects.
But the best top dressings are
made from well made compost because it provides a more complete and varied food source as
well as varied bacterial sources.
Run through shredder for best
March 20, 2013