PDA

View Full Version : Cow Manure.... odd measurements on bag at Lowe's..supposedly"real/composted manure".


Gort
August 27th, 2009, 11:59 PM
I took down the original question.
Long story short.

One bag of composted cow manure, at Lowe's, claimed only 13-15 lbs would suffice for 100 sq ft, if raked into soil(or rotortilled), where as the type FIL got( seemed to be the same product, but different store)... said 40 lbs per 9 sq ft(but it also stated to rotortill into the garden about 3 inches deep... so, if we went for the 1 inch deep, like the other product, it would still be 1 bag for 27 sq ft.... or 4 bags for 98 sq ft, which would be fine, since I use about 90-95 sq ft of garden).

So, how can one bag claim to do so well, with so little product, vs the other..when they appeared, to me, to be the same product,but sold by Wal-Mart?
Is one trying to "rip-off" customers?
FIL has used this 40 lbs bag/9 sq ft, and had the best garden ever, this past Summer, while others have struggled.

I don't quite see how 13lbs(don't recall the exact measurements, but it was around this figure), can work "wonders".

Lot of this product was left on the shelves at Lowe's.

Hmmm.

Anyone?

silverseeds
August 28th, 2009, 12:54 AM
Gort sounds to me they were exaggerating.

Gort
August 28th, 2009, 01:16 AM
Gort sounds to me they were exaggerating.

That's what I was thinking. Like the old saying goes" if it sounds too good to be true, it probably isn't"(something like this).

Maternut
August 28th, 2009, 02:23 AM
Well, at least they were underestimating the potential, most manufacturers would want you to buy more per square foot, no?

Gort
August 28th, 2009, 02:34 AM
Well, at least they were underestimating the potential, most manufacturers would want you to buy more per square foot, no?

That's what I was wondering... is 40 lbs per 9 sq ft really necessary.



Most of what is in the bag(FIL told me) of compost he bought is "little cow manure", and mainly "other stuff".

Maybe the Lowe's stuff is ok? I would think that maybe 40 lbs per 20 to 25 sq ft... would suffice(...just guessing here...).4 -5 bags for 100 sq ft might be enough, for a boost. My soil isn't completely lacking in nutrients, etc..
160-200 lbs of product should be enough, for a small garden, of 90-100 sq ft?


I figure between maybe some bags of the stuff FIL used, or(the same, it appears) from Lowe;s( 4-5 bags), add a few of the large cubed/bags of Peat Moss, along with the mulched leaves/lawn clippings, and the fairly composted straw left over in the garden....
should suffice, to help me get more out of my garden, in 2010, than any previous year(unless we get some really horrible weather, like in some areas, in 2009).

stone
August 28th, 2009, 08:42 AM
I prefer to go to the barn with a pick-up truck.

Where I live, you could take that 40 pound bag and empty it in the space the bag took up... 1 foot of bed... it wouldn't be over-doing it...

How do people think they are getting enough with these tiny amounts of compost / manure?

While there are still river bottom fields that have good topsoil, the up-land garden needs to build topsoil....

You're not going to do that by being tight-fisted in the amounts of organic materials you add.

It doesn't have to be specifically manure, wood-chips/sawdust build good topsoil... in a year or two.

jeffinsgf
August 28th, 2009, 08:51 AM
I'm with Stone. Pour it on until your pocketbook squeals. Better yet, take it back, drive out in the country and find someplace you can get a trailer load of real cow manure, maybe for free, certainly for less than you'll pay a big box.

lorna-organic
August 28th, 2009, 08:52 AM
I believe the rule of thumb is one pound of manure per square foot. Yes, it must be dug in to protect the nitrogen from being broken down by exposure to air.

bruce2288
August 28th, 2009, 12:34 PM
Gort, where are you? If you are anywhere near farm country a civil request, a little beer and maybe a small token of appreciation will probably get you all the manure you want. Come to my place and have your choice of sheep or cattle manure.

Gort
August 28th, 2009, 12:57 PM
I prefer to go to the barn with a pick-up truck.

Where I live, you could take that 40 pound bag and empty it in the space the bag took up... 1 foot of bed... it wouldn't be over-doing it...

How do people think they are getting enough with these tiny amounts of compost / manure?

While there are still river bottom fields that have good topsoil, the up-land garden needs to build topsoil....

You're not going to do that by being tight-fisted in the amounts of organic materials you add.

It doesn't have to be specifically manure, wood-chips/sawdust build good topsoil... in a year or two.

Thanks for the input.
I have used shredded mulch/bark, after planting, in some spots in the garden, last year...rotortilled it under this year.
It was really shredded up bark... it was breaking down by November-December last year.
I didn't layer it on very thick(about 1/2 inch-1 inch, around plants and pathways).

My soil is "ok". It drains fairly well/quickly.
It's what some may call "loamy-clay".
I have added lawn clippings/brown leaves...mulched together... and sort of like a compost.
Just never added manure...but after 5 years... it seems the garden could use a little added boost.

The 40 lb bags FIL bought weren't expensive.. maybe 1.50(that's with taxes, iirc)...so even if I went 40lbs per 9 sq ft( 3 inches deep/mixed with garden dirt, as recommended)..that's only 11 bags, or $17.50.

Good to hear that,if I decide to add more, that it doesn't hurt anything.
It didn't hurt FIL's crops one bit.

He uses mowed-over straw(then after it has been in the garden 1 year..rotortills it under, with this compost.... before planting, in the Spring, then plants, then adds more mowed-straw..he just leaves bales out in the weather for a few months.. and then lays out the layers, and mows it over with a riding mower...then tops off the garden) and adds it to the garden.

Might go with more..... couldn't hurt.

It has already been hot composted(according to the bag..iirc).

Gort
August 28th, 2009, 01:04 PM
I believe the rule of thumb is one pound of manure per square foot. Yes, it must be dug in to protect the nitrogen from being broken down by exposure to air.

Thanks.
I may have to try this....since your advice about the watermelons was spot on, earlier this year.
Sounds like I was somewhat "close", when I had earlier guessed aout 40 lbs of compost/manure for every 20-25 sq ft.

It sounds like more won't hurt.... but my ground isn't totally "bad".
It just needs a boost next Spring(along with the mulched leaves/lawn clippings this Fall).
I could probably use 3 bags for my (I have 100 sq ft, but only use around 90-95 sw ft of garden space)..garden.
Just slightly above what is recommended...but not overly too much.

I might go ahead and rotortill first... then go over(lightly) the bags of compost/manure with the tiller, to break it up really well... then rake it into the top 1-2 inches of soil.
Of course... after I plant... I will also add straw, again,as a mulch/ground cover, next year...so that may help, too.

I will have to remember this 1 pound per 1 sq ft rule.

I was going to try Chicken Pellets... but they are somewhat costly(from what I have seen, in person, at the local nursery), and sounds like they lose their "zip" in 6-8 weeks, after adding to the soil... and then you have to add more about mid-season, by either scratching the soil, around the plants, and mixing pellets/soil, or use the pellets as a mulch.

This compost/manure(and yard clippings/leaves, I always use, in the Fall, and lawn clippings, after they brown, in the Spring)...should be enough..and give the garden a full-season boost(and not 1/2 a season boost, it appears).

Maternut
August 28th, 2009, 01:09 PM
I have used the composted manure from Lowe's and several other places in the past, but this year I put in a raised bed and bought a truckload of triple shredded topsoil from a commercial greenhouse. I have to say the 19 bucks for the truckload was well worth the money spent. It filled my 4X8 by 10" or so, raised bed, also allowed me to top dress around all of my girlfriends flowers and to then top dress the rest of my garden. The top dressing was about an inch or depending on what it was put on.

If you have access to anything of the sort you'll be much further ahead to buy a truckload. Its even better when you have a gardener friend that you can talk into a half load as well so your not lugging it all by.

Know of anyone with alpacas or llamas? That's good **** right there if you can get your hands on it.

Gort
August 28th, 2009, 01:17 PM
I have used the composted manure from Lowe's and several other places in the past, but this year I put in a raised bed and bought a truckload of triple shredded topsoil from a commercial greenhouse. I have to say the 19 bucks for the truckload was well worth the money spent. It filled my 4X8 by 10" or so, raised bed, also allowed me to top dress around all of my girlfriends flowers and to then top dress the rest of my garden. The top dressing was about an inch or depending on what it was put on.

If you have access to anything of the sort you'll be much further ahead to buy a truckload. Its even better when you have a gardener friend that you can talk into a half load as well so your not lugging it all by.

Know of anyone with alpacas or llamas? --------------------.

The only Alpaca farm around here, that I have heard of is about maybe 75-90 minutes away.

That's for the information about the topsoil, etc.

There are 3 places within 5-10 miles of where I live.. that have all types of soil/mulches, etc... and one of the places is a commercial(with limited sales to the public, of plants/trees/shrubs, etc...) greenhouse.

I might have to check this out, also, as a possibility.
Thanks for the information.

My FIL has a truck... and he buys tons of stuff in 40 lb bags... maybe I can talk him checking this out with me....and if he likes it... maybe we can get a truck load of this dirt, and we split it/cost, etc...
\
I was wondering... I have seen some shredded mulch that was so fine(it appeared..just drove by 20-30 ft away, giant "hills" of the stuff piled up), it almost looked like dirt..as if it had already broken down for a few years...
this might(if not too costly) be another good choice, perhaps, for "mulch" for the garden.. 1-2 inches deep..and looked like it could break down enough, in a year...to easily rotortill into the soil...etc...

Gort
August 28th, 2009, 01:19 PM
Thanks for all comments everyone(just in case I didn't directly reply).

lorna-organic
August 28th, 2009, 01:22 PM
Gort, you are welcome. Since you are going to use other soil amendments, such as leaves and compost, you can reduce the one pound per sq. ft. ratio of manure to soil. The other amendments contain some nitrogen. The mix you plan on using will be good for your garden!

Gort
August 28th, 2009, 01:39 PM
Gort, you are welcome. Since you are going to use other soil amendments, such as leaves and compost, you can reduce the one pound per sq. ft. ratio of manure to soil. The other amendments contain some nitrogen.
Thanks for the information.

The mix you plan on using will be good for your garden!

This is good to hear.

Maternut
August 28th, 2009, 01:54 PM
Just one thing to keep in mind, if you add wood chips or sawdust that isn't composted through the addition of nitrogen is recommended. It takes a bunch of nitrogen to break that stuff down and can actually deplete your standing supply in some instances.

bcday
August 28th, 2009, 02:11 PM
One bag of composted cow manure, at Lowe's, claimed only 13-15 lbs would suffice for 100 sq ft, if raked into soil(or rotortilled), where as the type FIL got( seemed to be the same product, but different store)... said 40 lbs per 9 sq ft(but it also stated to rotortill into the garden about 3 inches deep... so, if we went for the 1 inch deep, like the other product, it would still be 1 bag for 27 sq ft.... or 4 bags for 98 sq ft, which would be fine, since I use about 90-95 sq ft of garden).

So, how can one bag claim to do so well, with so little product, vs the other..when they appeared, to me, to be the same product,but sold by Wal-Mart?
Is one trying to "rip-off" customers?
FIL has used this 40 lbs bag/9 sq ft, and had the best garden ever, this past Summer, while others have struggled.

I don't quite see how 13lbs(don't recall the exact measurements, but it was around this figure), can work "wonders".

I wonder if 13-15 lbs. per 100 sq. ft. is the maximum amount that is deemed safe to use in your garden? Lowe's doing a CYA?

Google Aminopyralid:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aminopyralid

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2008/jun/29/food.agriculture

http://www.weeds.iastate.edu/mgmt/2006/aminopyralid.shtml

I don't know how much this Aminopyralid is used in the USA or if Lowe's manure contains any of it, but I wouldn't exceed the amount recommended on the package label until you find out more about it. :(

Gort
August 28th, 2009, 02:13 PM
I wonder if 13-15 lbs. per 100 sq. ft. is the maximum amount that is deemed safe to use in your garden? Lowe's doing a CYA?

Google Aminopyralid:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aminopyralid

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2008/jun/29/food.agriculture

http://www.weeds.iastate.edu/mgmt/2006/aminopyralid.shtml

I don't know how much this Aminopyralid is used in the USA or if Lowe's manure contains any of it, but I wouldn't exceed the amount recommended on the package label until you find out more about it. :(


Thanks.

Gort
August 28th, 2009, 02:17 PM
Just one thing to keep in mind, if you add wood chips or sawdust that isn't composted through the addition of nitrogen is recommended. It takes a bunch of nitrogen to break that stuff down and can actually deplete your standing supply in some instances.

Thanks.

I was thinking of mulching with straw, then adding a thin layer(1/2 inch to 1 inch ) of finely shredded bark, on topic of the straw(after adding , maybe, some composted manure).

Any thoughts/comments about this?

Maternut
August 28th, 2009, 02:59 PM
Sounds pretty darn good to me. Ever consider a cover crop for the winter?

Gort
August 28th, 2009, 03:07 PM
Sounds pretty darn good to me. Ever consider a cover crop for the winter?

Sort of. FIL is going to try a cover crop this year(think it's his first?).
I think he said about early October, he was going to plant clover, iirc.
I thought he said Red Clover.

I might see how this goes for FIL.... and if all goes well.... who knows?
Maybe next year?

There are so many things to think about.:eek:;)
Have a good day.
I need to get some work done.

Gort
August 28th, 2009, 11:27 PM
I think ,for now... this Fall, I will do as always, and mulch lawn clippings/brown leaves, and put that into the garden... then in the Spring, get some bags of the compost/manure, and rotortill the (by the almost completely broken down) straw(that's in the garden now),compost/manure..... all together....
then , like I did this past Spring, in some spots, add either newspaper, or something along these lines, to the garden, and cover with about 2-3 inches of straw, and mulched(brown) lawn clippings(I try to get a pile going for 3-4 weeks, the clippings get really warm,/gets to turning brown,etc....almost like a compost itself, of sorts).
This should do it...along with some Fish Emulsion fertilizer, for a boost, as needed, for the plants.

My FIL does grown beans with his corn... and this seems to help. Might also try this, too.

bhpigeon2
August 29th, 2009, 11:38 PM
My rule of thumb is 1 gallon of fresh 100% horse manure per 10 square feet. That's probably 6# per gallon unless it's dried. With cow manure being lower in NPK, the 1# per square foot suggested by Lorna is smack on when composted.

bhp2

Train
August 30th, 2009, 09:59 AM
Ya Gort
Could it not be possible for you to
acquire and maintain a rabbit outdoors
in a hutch?
That would at least give you some fresh
manure that is not mixed down with
other materials you didn't ask for and
prolly didn't need.
I found most bagged cow manure to contain
so small an amount of real manure it
could hardily be called that.
In truth live composted manure is what
is the order of the day so we get all those
microorganisms as well as the organic bulk.
The amount of bunny manure from one
bunny is not much but there are ways to
stretch that and I would be happy to share
that with you sometime.
Train.

bhpigeon2
August 31st, 2009, 01:49 AM
Remember also that in order to be composted there must be more than just manure. If it comes from a dairy operation, there may be straw or sawdust which is used on the floor. May even be some sticks or shavings or other bits of wood which come with the sawdust bedding. That becomes the carbon needed for proper composting. After composting, only the carbon portion of the equation should be recognizable as the manure would be broken down to the consistency of soil or humus.

bhp2