Last year on a budget we made some raised beds & I was suckered by a
skip company into buying top soil from them. It arrived & was full of
broken glass & crushed bricks & stones. Do you guys know of any way of
So far I have mixed in some chicken pellet manure, all the compost from
my 3 compost bins.
Will it make any difference if I mis in some fish blood or bone meal,
or is it the case that its just dead, rubbish soil & my own fault for
doing it on the cheap?
The snag is were on a tight budget so any ideas you have will be
p.s. A friend at work's dad has 1000 chickens & has offered me a large
supply of chicken poo if I need it.
p.p.s. I should also say were new to gardening so be kind with your
responses :-) Especially with me buying top soil from a skip company
Try and rake out the larger stones and all glass, leaving glass there is
just an accident waiting to happen in the future. Gardening is a hands on
thing. Smaller pebbles are not desirable but not as harmful and you may
have to tolerate them, many people do.
It will help
Chicken poo is good manure, it is full of minerals, especially nitrogen
compounds when fresh. Don't over do it or it will kill your plants, the
fresher it is the less you use. It's not much good for texture though. You
may get good results adding it to your compost heap with a low nitrogen
source of organic matter such as straw.
What would be good is a large amount of a lower nutrient manure (horse, cow,
etc) or some other vegetable matter that will improve the organic content.
You don't just need nutrients (chicken poo) but structure as well. Try hay,
grass, straw, finer mulch, animal bedding, any local source of dead plant
material that is cheap. Sometimes people will pay you to take it away.
Before taking anything like that check it for contamination and weeds, you
don't want to be importing more problems. If it is still green or contains
weed seeds compost it first.
You could try sifting out some of the rubbish by making a compost
sifter, which is just a wooden frame with some small-weave wire mesh
stapled over it. You put the sifter over a wheelbarrow and then rub
the compost through it. Takes a while but is very effective.
As Dave said, get rid of as much of the glass & crushed bricks & stones
as you can. Add rock phosphate, some wood ash, a little chicken manure,
and cover with alfalfa as a mulch. Cover all with newsprint (no color)
and mulch again. Make holes in bedding where you wish to put plants or
9after a couple of weeks) water seeds in to bedding. If you get worms,
you are successful. If not, you're not.
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