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Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by GTC1187, Mar 4, 2011.
Would it be composted horse manure spread as a top dressing?
Sounds good to me. Can I assume by the question you have a source of this available to you?
Perhaps the compost just create a better seed bed and nutrient source. I have a canal road that runs behind my house that I have mulched with grass clippings /leaves to keep the weeds down for a couple of years . Last year I didn't and I had the thickest stand of weeds along the whole line of houses before I got them cut down. They were easily two feet taller behind my house than any other house on the row.
The weeds were probably growing with most of their roots in the "Soilless" pile of rotted material, correct? No added Fertilizers I assume...
Isnt chicken manure very cheap and plentiful? Outside of human based like Milorganite. My uncle was a corn farmer and growing up I remember after they plowed and disked the fields they put down chicken manure. Weeds weren't a problem.
I don't think chickens really eat any thing that they don't grind up in their gullet... Seeds are a big part of their natural diet, and their droppings are probably weed-free...
It certainly could be cheap, but Composted horse manure is risky business in some parts.
The risk is that the horses may have foraged on fields sprayed with herbicides. Noxious weed herbicides can have a very long residual, and pass right through the horse and the composting process.
You certainly want the source tested, and then you want to grow a few vegetables out of it to be sure. Look for any twisting or stunting. Radishes and tomatoes are good ones to plant.
IMO the biggest concern when it comes to weed seeds in the compost is the techniques used to compost it.
If the pile was turned and or aerated without letting weeds grow on the top layer you are going to be more weed free than if they just piled it up and let it sit for a year...
letting weeds grow on the top layer of an unmanaged compost pile and spill their thousands of seeds right into the pile... not good
JD is correct... If there is no 'good' source of compost, maybe better off w/out it...
Organic matter adds space among the soil particles, which improves water circulation and drainage, as well as aeration. It also creates a friendly environment for worms. They set up residence underground and keep passageways open for nutrients, water and air to reach the plants' roots..Although you do not say what you are fertilizing? Garden..lawn..?.Compost teas or Fish fertilizers would be an inexpensive option. Poultry Manures work well as does Millorganite..but the smell is a bit offensive when wet to some..The heavy metal content in Millorganite is miniscule altho NOFA and others dont accept it as "true organic"..Those are the cheapest I know of besides Composting correctly at your house..those tumblers make short work of it!