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Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by turbo5560, Jan 14, 2008.

  1. Gerry Miller

    Gerry Miller LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 504

    That's right Tim, that YOUR OPINION. Other people, actual scientist in fact, differ and state there is an definite difference between humus from Alaska and sphagnum peat moss. They are NOT the same.

    "Is Alaska Humus a peat moss? No, because it does not contain a preponderance of sphagnum or other moss. Alaska Humus is made from meadow plants, that grew following glaciation, but they were plants that grew hundreds to thousands of years ago. The decomposition process was arrested, but not with water and anaerobic conditions, but with perma-frost.

    The conditions that make peat, or humus are very similar. But the factor that stopped decomposition from going full out was different in the two composting processes."

    Elaine Ingham

    I'll take her word for that Tim.
     
  2. NattyLawn

    NattyLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,643


    If you read the first two sentences of Tim's reply it looks like he's saying that Alaksa Humus and Alaska Magic are NOT the same....Read that again....
     
  3. Gerry Miller

    Gerry Miller LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 504

    No, they are the same, just from a different distributor. Alaska Humus, trade name, is, as Tim stated, from Jeff Lowenfel and Alaska Magic it the trade name for the same humus from Denali Gold. It can also be purchased from Peaceful Valley under the trade name of Arctic Humus, which is the same thing.

    Tim is implying that peat moss and humus are the same and they clearly are not.

    http://www.groworganic.com/item_ISA315_PVFS_Arctic_Humus_1_cubic_foot.html
     
  4. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,298

    Strictly speaking, humus is considered to be the most stable form of fully decomposed OM, and further decomposition is unlikely. I believe Gerry has misunderstood what was written.

    The decomposition process was arrested, but not with water and anaerobic conditions, but with perma-frost.

    and

    But the factor that stopped decomposition from going full out was different in the two composting processes.

    This pretty much looks to me like the product is not humus at all, but simply partially decomposed OM since the decomposition process stopped before it reached a state that could be considered humus.
     
  5. Gerry Miller

    Gerry Miller LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 504

    Excuse me, but I didn't misunderstand anything. Please, don't ever speak for me and keep me out of your posts.
     
  6. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,298

    I'm not speaking for you Gerry, simply pointing out the error in your logic. Tim merely pointed out that calling it humus was a stretch based on what he has observed. Perhaps he misidentified what he was seeing, that however does not change the fact that he observed something that was not fully decomposed, which is the primary reason for his statement. Perhaps it is just me, but I feel your reply to Tim's post was extremely adversarial for no reason at all.
     
  7. Gerry Miller

    Gerry Miller LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 504

    LOL...you pointing out the error in my logic???? There is no error. What I posted was from Dr. Ingham, who is a REAL scientist. I don't see anything in ERROR with her logic. If you want to post your OPINION that's fine, but don't declare some error in logic based upon how YOU view things.
     
  8. NattyLawn

    NattyLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,643


    I agree....The "actual scientist" comment was a little in-appropriate as well.
     
  9. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,298

    Your error is relating Tims statement that it is a stretch calling it humus, to Elaine's statement regarding what the product is made up of. The two are not related, hence the error in your logic.
     
  10. Tim Wilson

    Tim Wilson LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 795

    Hello everyone, I thought I might hear from you Gerry. Elaine is simply mistaken if she calls this humus. It is indeed composted 'to a certain stage'. This is very obvious under the microscope and you are free to look at the images in the video I shot which illustrates this. Pictures don't lie. Just because I did not stick through one boring major routine to get Dr. planted in front of my name does not mean that I am unable to think scientifically. I studied a much broader range during my education including, biology, physiology, special education, physiological psychology and a smattering of this and that. I make mistakes though and so does Elaine. I have corrected some errors for her in private and she has helped me.

    I made sure I did not mis-identify the sphagnum in Alaska Magic. I looked at samples from three different purchased sources. I consulted with a minor expert and a major expert to be sure I was correct. If you insist I'll post his email to me along with his credentials. Alaska Magic has a large amounts of sphagnum peat in it. It may not be identical to Canadian Sphagnum peat (CSP) bales but CSP is also microbially active in very similar fashion. Admitedly it varies from batch to batch. I use it cause it's extremely cheap and because I'm a real 'gardener' <GRIN> with a real microscope. I have the luxury of checking for microbes ahead of time.

    For Tad Alaska Magic is good because it is consistent for a mix that he is distributing. I'm just pointing out that the home or farm gardener might save some $ by trying CSP.

    As for the definition of humus, as I have noted before, it is illusive; sometimes described as a paste gel-type substance (this is real compost); or very fine totally composted brown to black material. Generally it is agreed (I think) that there should be no recognizable plant material as there is in Alaska Magic. Absolutely composted material has nothing recognizable; no partial sticks, no partial leaves.

    When I asked Jeff and Wayne about Alaska Magic, if my memory serves me right, they said it was a totally different company from theirs' Alaska Humus. I will double check.

    Kiril your logic stands.

    Salutations,
    Tim
     

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