tumble weed
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Organic Fertilizer

I want to grow some organic veggies this year. I've ordered some organic/nonGMO seeds. I have never gardened before. I want to fertilize my little patch where I plan to grow as well as the entire yard. What is a good organic fertilizer I can use? Where can I purchase it? Online or store doesn't matter. I live right on the water, does this matter for run-off? Thanks so much.

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soil
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compost, buy it at landscaping supply companies/garden centers in bulk for a lot cheaper than bags at home depot( better quality too)
For all things come from earth, and all things end by becoming earth.

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farmerlon
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Yes, as "Soil" said above, compost is a fantastic organic fertilizer and soil conditioner.
Also, check out the Compost forum here at HG... I would recommend that you start making your own compost as soon as possible.
And, you might consider brewing compost tea to use on your yard.

Best of luck with the garden! :D

tumble weed
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farmerlon wrote:Yes, as "Soil" said above, compost is a fantastic organic fertilizer and soil conditioner.
Also, check out the Compost forum here at HG... I would recommend that you start making your own compost as soon as possible.
And, you might consider brewing compost tea to use on your yard.

Best of luck with the garden! :D
Thanks for the replies. Both we helpful.
I have started composting. It's chilly here so it isn't brekaing down quickly. I suppose this year I can buy compost. I am told planting with seeds means I have to start planting in the near future. Can I use the compost on the entire yard or just on the spot where I garden? I want to do away with damaging chemicals, you know.
What is "tea composting"? I do throw my morning (organic) tea bag into my bin, does that count?

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rainbowgardener
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Compost tea is making a tea or infusion from your compost

There's a whole huge thread in the Compost Forum about ACT, sometimes called AACT (aerated, activated compost tea), you can read as much as you want to.

Done right it is a bit complicated, because of the aerated part... it needs a pump, airstone, timing the brew for 24 - 36 hours, and then sterilizing all the equipment afterwards. I haven't gotten in to doing all that (yet?), but I make a compost infusion, by putting a small shovel of compost in a bucket of water (rainwater or tap water that has sat over night to outgas the chlorine), add some molasses, and keep stirring it for awhile.

The molasses and compost gets the microbial activity started. By making it into an infusion, a little bit of compost goes a lot farther in your garden and you can use it for a foliar spray.

Whether buying or making compost, unlikely that you will have enough to use on the whole yard, probably best on the garden spot. But if you did happen to have enough, it would be fine for the whole yard. Compost is good for lawns too.

I do keep a compost pile all winter, to have something to do with my kitchen scraps. It mostly just sits there frozen, but starts working again in the spring ... it is already active and filled with earthworms!
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tumble weed
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Thanks. When is a good time to fertilize? I live in MD and it is still chilly. Do I wait until late March or do I do it sooner if I plan on planting seeds? Also when do I plant seeds? Thanks

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soil
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you can use compost all over your yard, pretty much every plant will like compost.

you can apply compost whenever the soil is not frozen solid.

apply compost tea in spring, summer and fall months.
For all things come from earth, and all things end by becoming earth.

gros michel
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As everyone's said compost is great but since you mentioned being a new gardener and "well aged" compost takes time you may want to take a different route initially. I often use Espoma organic fertilizers as an extra boost to my plants in addition to composting. Not endorsing one brand over another but they're local ( NJ) and readily available. I'd wait till your plants are showing active growth before fertilizing or mabe right at planting time... likely April or May. Once June's warmth hits just go by the instructions on the package and judge for yourself how the plants respond over time. Bed preparation is just as important and I'd also reccomend tilling in some peat or well aged manure before planting. I also use greensand , rock phosphate and lime on my beds every few years based on an initial soil sample reccomendation. The best advice is just do it and learn as you go.

DoubleDogFarm
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I also use greensand , rock phosphate and lime on my beds every few years based on an initial soil sample recommendation. The best advice is just do it and learn as you go.
If you like going this route, you maybe interested in Azomite.

Sense we are throwing out local names, I like Hendrikus Schraven Organics.

Eric

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hendi_alex
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I always use compost, but last year started mixing my own supplement. I blend cotton seed meal, blood meal, bone meal, kelp meal, ironite, and peletized lime. I'm not precise on the measurements but use cotton seed meal as the base of perhaps 60% with perhaps 30% kelp meal, and 10% bone meal and blood meal. Just toss a handful or two of the ironite and lime.
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

DoubleDogFarm
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hendi,

Welcome back, I haven't seen you in awhile. :)

Are you concerned about the arsenic and lead in the Ironite. Ironite is tailings from mining and are full of trouble.

Eric

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hendi_alex
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Hi Eric,

Never occurred to me to think about such, though ironite is not a product that I use very much. Last year I didn't even add the ironite to my conconction but did add a bit to this year's mix. Guess I'll save future use for the evergreens that suffer from chlorosis and will keep it out of the veggie patch.


Found this in a post from the Minnesota Dept of Health:

Ironite:
Ironite products with higher levels of arsenic were registered in Minnesota from 1992-2003. These registrations expired at the end of 2003. New formulations of Ironite were first registered in Minnesota in 2005. [url=https://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/eh/hazardous/sites/hennepin/southminneapolissoil.html]Arsenic levels in the new products[/url] have been confirmed by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture to be below the limits of detection


Thanks for the heads up info,

Alex
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

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