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SQF Soil Recipe
Tags: Soil
March 5, 2009
1:36 pm
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CindyP
Hart, MI
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SQF Soil Composition    This is from Square Foot Gardening

1/3 compost

1/3 vermiculite

1/3 peat

“Learn all you can from the mistakes of others. You won’t have time to make them all yourself.”  ― Alfred Sheinwold

March 1, 2011
3:19 am
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MaryB
WV
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For those of us that cannot put in a big garden, we can do a container garden!  This is from The Bountiful Container by McGee & Stuckey:

 

Basic; Conifer bark & perlite

3 Gal pine bark

1/2 Gal peat

1/2 Gal perlite

4 T Lime

1/4 C Controlled released fertilzer

Micronutrient powder

This is good for 2 or 3 years.  

March 1, 2011
9:13 am
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MrsFuzz
Colorado
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If you're doing containers, I most heartily recommend Al Tapla's 5-1-1 mix:

 

5 parts pine bark fines (often sold as soil conditioners or mulch)

1 part Sphagnum Peat

1 part Vermiculite

 

http://forums2.gardenweb.com/forums/load/contain/msg112015049996.html?105

Wearing cowboy boots does not make one an agriculturist….Having at least 3 varieties of poop on them does.

March 1, 2011
9:41 am
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MaryB
WV
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Since I have not gotten the dirt yet, I'm glad you shared that, Mrs Fuzz.  Thank you.

March 1, 2011
9:51 am
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MrsFuzz
Colorado
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Yup!  You'll still want the lime & a complete fertilizer with 5-1-1.   :)  Suggested amounts depending on the size of the batch you are making are in the post linked above.  

People often ask about what "pine bark fines" are.  I get mine at the local garden center, and they're labeled as "Bark Mini-Nuggets."  You want something that's fairly evenly sized at 1/4" to 1/2" or so.

Wearing cowboy boots does not make one an agriculturist….Having at least 3 varieties of poop on them does.

March 1, 2011
9:59 am
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MaryB
WV
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Ok, I will have it all on a list so if I can't find what I am looking for I will ask for help.   I have a bag of lime that busted open over the winter..  would you say that is still useable?

March 1, 2011
10:14 am
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MrsFuzz
Colorado
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What kind of lime?  The lime you want for your garden is called "Dolomitic" or Garden Lime.

 

Otherwise, unless it got wet, you should be good to go.   :)

 

So hopefully this doesn't detract too much from the OP, the 5-1-1 mix is specifically for containers.  If you're doing SQF Gardening in raised beds (where the medium in the bed has contact with the ground, you don't need (and probably shouldn't use) this type of mix.

Wearing cowboy boots does not make one an agriculturist….Having at least 3 varieties of poop on them does.

March 1, 2011
10:59 am
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MaryB
WV
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I'm embarrassed now because I do not know what kind of lime.  I went and bought bags of lime to (what I thought) sweeten the soil.  I am doing the container garden. 

March 1, 2011
11:04 am
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MrsFuzz
Colorado
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It will tell you on the bag.  You can use Dolomitic (Garden) Lime, or Agricultural Lime, but you definately don't want "slaked" or "hydrated" lime.   :)

Wearing cowboy boots does not make one an agriculturist….Having at least 3 varieties of poop on them does.

March 1, 2011
12:20 pm
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MaryB
WV
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January 21, 2011
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Oh my gosh.... ok, got it!  hug

January 6, 2012
11:31 am
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pharmerphil
Minnesota
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October 19, 2011
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Although all the above mixes are great, some words of caution...

Pine bark fines must be well composted; or they will rob nitrogen from the soil, as will any wood shavings, or wood chips.

*So watch for yellowing, slow growth

*Seeds of some varieties may not germinate 

 

pH of pine bark is typically 4.5 or lower
sphagnum peat moss has a pH of aprox.  4.5 

This is very acidic.

Good for acid loving plants, like mentioned above  Calcium carbonate or dolomitic limestone would be needed to adjust the pH of any soil mix containing acidic ingredients like sphagnum peat or composted pine bark.

Most plants prefer a neutral to slightly higher ph, somewhere in the range of 5.5 -7.0

A rule of thumb for slightly acid soils: apply 5 pounds of lime per 100 square feet
(If you have a 5 x 20-foot raised bed...You would need 5 pounds  of lime to raise the Ph 1 point)

Wood ashes also will raise soil pH. Wood ashes contain up to 70 percent calcium carbonate, as well as potassium, phosphorus, and many trace elements. 
CAUTION: Wood ash is fast-acting, a little goes a long way. No more than 2 pounds per 100 square feet in applications every other year

forkwave 

January 6, 2012
11:39 am
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Leah's Mom
Northern Indiana
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Good info, pharmer!

January 7, 2012
6:04 am
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pharmerphil
Minnesota
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Leah's Mom said:

Good info, pharmer!

http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y296/chobb/Sm/yo.gif

Thank Ya Ma'm

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