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Old February 7, 2019   #12
Ozark's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Ozark, Mo.
Posts: 201

Lots of good thoughts and information have been posted here in response to my questions. Thanks, everyone!

I just spoke with the University of Missouri soil scientist who ran this test and wrote the report, and his input matches a lot of the answers here. He says he should have realized this material was compost and not soil when it tested as 44% organic matter, that just slipped by him.

As most here have said, he thinks this compost should be mixed with something else in my raised garden beds. He suggested getting some good topsoil hauled in, to be mixed at the ratio of 2 parts soil to 1 part compost. He said I should look at the soil I'm buying first to see that it's pretty much free of rocks, doesn't have too much clay, and that it appears and smells like good dirt for growing things. Makes sense to me!

The fellow I spoke to is also a vegetable gardener in raised beds, and he mixes soil and compost in just the way he is advising me to do. He says the compost chemistry will straighten right out when I do that - pH will move into the right range, and the high and "excess" nutrients in the compost will mean that I'll only need to add straight nitrogen fertilizer to those beds for years to come.
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