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Talkback: Mulch, mulch, mulch

We have recently collected seaweed blown up in a storm and left above the usual high tide mark. We have just started growing vegetables this year in deep beds - not grown any before. Any comments as to how we can use the seaweed. We have put some in the bottom of the potato trench.
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  • it wouldn't have been so bad if you took it and mixed it with some water!
  • Ok, I suppose I'm going to have to stop procrastinating and just do it, aren't I! I've been putting off mulching my beds this year partly because everything already seems to be sprouting and, in places, there's not much actual soil free to put the compost onto. Also, I have one of those plastic compost bins with a little door at the bottom which is great in theory but getting to the good stuff at the back can be difficult without the rest all falling on top of me! Oh well, perhaps the best thing would be to just scoop off the top layers, take the whole bin off the pile and dig - mucky and tiring but I'm sure it'll be well worth it in the end!
  • I live in Cardiff. Can anybody tell me where I cold get some mushroom compost please. Thanks
  • Don't you use your chickens' poo, James? I had saved mine from some months ago, mixed with straw, and that has gone on the garden this week; like you, I let the worms get on with it. Got a few feathered visitors too - after the worms I suppose.
  • Alas I have no room for a compost bin but I munch up prunings during the year and store them in black bin liners, under the oil tank. They take between 12 and 18 months to rot down enough but make a good mulch. Its surprising how many worms find their way into the bags too.


    Things are looking up though as I got a wormery for Christmas so I'm hoping to make better use of the kitchen waste this year. Can't wait for the weather to warm up a bit more to get started and order my worms.

  • I have two of those black plastic compost bins, which I use in rotation. Usually, when I start the new bin, it's not long before I notice lots of bugs and worms doing their work. However, although one of my bins is choc full of worms and bugs, the one currently in use does not seem to have any, even though it's almost full. I have checked for tunneling around the bin, in case there may be a rat under there, but cannot see anything. I compost all the usual stuff, tea bags, coffee grounds, cardboard tubes, vegetable peelings, plant & grass waste,& occasional newspaper. I do make sure also, that it is not too wet or dry. Please can anyone offer an explanation as to why this particular load is not attracting the usual 'workers'?
  • The chicken poo goes into the compost heap. Those who have chickens be wary of putting neat poo on anything - it is very strong and can burn your plants. Always compost the stuff first - as Trudi has very wisely done.
  • Is manure organic? Does any antibiotic or inoculation that the animals may have had make it non-organic?
  • I use loads of leaf mould, that I collect from my local park, where the council gardeners kindly dump it in the same place year after year. By digging down a bit, I find wonderful, well rotted stuff that my garden loves. I put about 20 bags down last year, using it as a mulch/soil conditioner. It beats carrying it back by the carrier bag full from the local woods! Tip: try not to use conifer leaf mould, it takes longer to break down and is very slighly acidic.
  • Hi all, I can get free horse manure from two very friendly shetland ponies near me. Am a bit new to this, but can anyone tell me how i make it 'well rotted' manure?

    I know it sounds silly - presently the manure is dry due to the lovely weather we have - if i put it in my compost bin for it to rot down, do i need to add anything? I presume it needs moisture!

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