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Peat free compost

I have just bought a bag of Homebase peat free compost and it stinks. Is it ok to use?


  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 11,956
    What does it smell like, musty ? If you leave the bag open for a while the smell may disappear .
  • AdellaAdella Posts: 3
    It’s not just damp, it smells like manure but really strong. Couldn’t use it for houseplants.

  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 10,965
    I was dog walking with a mate this afternoon and he asked me to have a sniff of the peat free Westmorland compost he'd just bought that was in a small bag.
    It smelt like a mix of fox droppings and vomit.
    He'd already planted up his tomato seedlings in it, but the smell from the conservatory was so bad in the house he had to get rid of them.
    He bought 6 bags.. so he's taking them back tomorrow

    Billericay - Essex

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 11,956
    I would suggest taking back to Homebase with the receipt and asking for your money back or a replacement bag. l have had a look to see if there are any comments about this elsewhere and l have come across several. The response seems to be that it might be due to being stacked in a warm environment such as in store which ends them to "sweat".
    I'm no expert in consumer rights but it doesn't sound as though it's fit for purpose.
  • AdellaAdella Posts: 3
    Thank you for all your comments. Will take it back today.
  • Chris-P-BaconChris-P-Bacon Posts: 943
    edited April 2022
    It sounds like it's become anaerobic? Most likely because it's become too wet or it was packed wet? I don't know the contents of Homebase peat free but I suspect there maybe an amount of municipal green waste in it.
  • SlumSlum Posts: 382
    This year’s Homebase peat free is a Which best buy. It is made from composted bark fine, West+ which is Westland's version of treated wood fibre and coir, with enough feed for four to six weeks. I’ve used it with no problems so far this year. Homebase had a 3 for 2 offer so it came in at £4 per bag. I quite liked the smell, but I wouldn’t want it in the house! 😀
  • LoxleyLoxley Posts: 5,416
    edited April 2022
    See if you can find Melcourt Sylvagrow. I opened a bag of this yesterday and was very pleased with it - very high quality. Consistent texture and no detectable odour.
  • JennyJJennyJ Posts: 9,631
    Homebase closed its branch here a few years ago and I refuse to drive to any of the ones they've kept open on principle (probably minimum half an hour each way).
    Doncaster, South Yorkshire. Soil type: sandy, well-drained
  • KT53KT53 Posts: 8,480
    I'm not sure that compost being foul smelling would make it not fit for purpose.  If it was sold for houseplants there would be a stronger argument that it is not fit.
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