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A Little Bit of Real Organic Compost Goes a Long Way

White bag filled with compost
Open bag of Farm Made Organic Compost

The good news for organic gardeners is that we don’t need all of the other stuff that traditional gardeners use like fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides and fungicides. We organic gardeners get to keep it simple and use only what nature intended. The best thing that any of us can do to develop and grow the soil in our gardens, which in turn, will develop and grow healthy plants is to compost with real organic compost.

Compost gives us natural organic gardeners so much bang for our buck! First, if it’s an organic farm made compost like the one from Number 2 Organics, it is loaded with all the major and minor nutrients and trace minerals that your plants need to thrive. Plus, it is an incredible source of clean, healthy organic matter which is critical for building healthy soil and for the process of mineralization to occur in the garden. Mineralization occurs when the soil microbes break down the nutrients in organic matter into a form that plants can uptake. Creating an environment where the soil microbes and soil animals can thrive should be the goal of every organic gardener.

chrysanthemum plant with yellow centers and white flowers in garden
Blooming chrysanthemum after spring composting

If you grow organic, then you will also have real organic inputs to start creating your own compost at home. Inputs equal outputs. If you have organic inputs to put into your compost bin, then you will have organic outputs coming out of your compost bin. This is another reason that Number 2 Organics Farm Made Organic Compost is such a valuable asset to have in your gardening toolbox. Most home gardeners cannot make enough compost at home to take care of all of our gardening needs. Adding or mixing Number 2's organic compost to your homemade compost is a great way to add microbial diversity into your garden while ensuring that you are adding clean, safe and healthy organic matter into your gardens, orchards and raised beds.

My favorite way to use compost is to use it as a light topdress. I go with as little as a 1/8” to 1/4” maximum and then water it in. With good, clean, well screened, one hundred percent finished compost you don’t need to add the 2”-4” topping that most composts recommend, because the compost is done, finished, and it’s not a bag of wood! Topdressing your garden with really good finished compost is the way that we organic gardeners get away from the fertilizer trap that others gardeners are trapped in. Our plants get their nutrients naturally from the compost and not from synthetics designed and created by chemical companies.

blooming pink dahlias in garden setting
Blooming Dahlias after spring composting

Spring is a great time to topdress your entire garden. It’s also a great time to add compost into your raised beds and containers to revitalize them. If you need to add new soil to your containers, you can scoop out the top 3"-4” and cover the old potting soil with a 1/2” layer of compost, preferably a mix of your good homemade compost and of Number 2 Organics Farm Made Organic Compost, then water it with your watering wand and cover it with a great potting soil like Number 2 Organics Premium Organic Potting Soil. It's our all-in-one potting soil. Then you water the new potting soil in with your wand and let it sit for a day or two before you plant your starts.

Throughout the growing season you will want to lightly topdress your garden, orchard and beds with 1/16” of compost. I recommend doing this about every 6-8 weeks, especially for heavy feeders like our food gardens and flowering plants. You will also want to make up some compost tea and feed your beds and containers once a month. You can get a variety of compost teas that are simple and easy to use from Malibu Compost, or take some of your compost from Number 2 Organics and make up a batch of compost tea at home.

hand harvesting romaine lettuce from raised garden bed
Harvesting romaine and mustard greens after organic protocols

Anyway you slice it, you can see that for your organic garden there is nothing better than a good, finished, real organic compost, and if you use it right as I’ve recommended, a little bit of compost goes a long way…

© Randy Ritchie 2023

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