It’s that time of year when I start thinking about getting my seeds together, making my seed pots, mixing my potting soil and related activities. I have my non-gmo heirloom seeds, my seed cups (used yogurt cups), my LED Grow Lights, and I’m getting the materials together for my potting mix. I’m using Mel’s Mix (1/3 vermiculite, 1/3 peat moss, 1/3 compost) for the seed starting, as well as the soil in my containers I transplant into. I’m hoping to do some raised beds (Square Foot Gardening) this year, instead of the 5 gallon pails I used last year. I’ll fill the raised beds with the same recipe above. I had 8 raised beds in NY done this way and they worked very well.
Recently we bought a bag of organic potting mix from Walmart. It was the Miracle Grow Organic Choice (Container) Potting Mix, which contains sphagnum peat moss, partially composted wood chips, and chicken litter (.10/.05/.05). It’s a bit expensive at 16.8 lbs for $10 ($.65 / lb. w/tax), but it works well in our bucket garden (chicken litter – wear gloves). Then a friend of ours sent us some of his worm castings. At $28 for 30 lbs. (free shipping), it’s a bit more expensive ($.93 / lb), but it’s local, small business, and more sustainable (no peat moss and no chunks of bark). We are setting up additional buckets of tomatoes and lettuce, and will keep you posted on our progress. We have used worm compost in the past, with fantastic results.
Check out Jeff’s work at http://organicandmechanic.ecrater.com/