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New year's resolution! BED PREP!


Starting TODAY, I decided to build the ultimate organic growing area with every proven organic soil amendment in the book. Any plant will have record growth and production using these elements.

Here’s what I used today:

Not just any compost, but “earthworm castings” which is the most rich and purest form of compost:

The above is 20 lbs of “Rabbit Hill Farms” brand castings that are the best in the organic industry. I spread the entire bag over the surface of my 100 sq ft area.

Lavasand retains water and offers some paramagnetic
qualities to the soil..

The soil after the lavasand application..

About 20 lbs per 100 sq ft was used.


Greensand has some of the paramagnetic qualities of lavasand, but adds tons of trace minerals to the soil that are not normally available to the plants’ root systems.
Here is what greensand looks like:

It was applied at a rate of about 20lbs per 1000 sq ft.
My winter Pansies will just LOVE this!

This is an often overlooked amendment.

Expanded Shale is shale rock that has been heated to a very high temperature in a kiln to point that it “pops” like popcorn. That changes the molecular structure to a substance that has a great porous surface area. Expanded shale has the ability to absorb moisture during wet times and release it to the plant’s root systems during dry times.

Here is what expanded shale looks like after it is applied to the soil:

It looks like pebbles, but each one of those pebbles can store 10x it’s weight in water!


Corn meal is a wonderful soil amendment that suppresses fungal growth on plants via the root system.
It also decomposes into a rich composting medium over time in the soil. Here’s what the application of corn meal looked like:

And here’s a closeup of cornmeal application around my Pansies:

(6) Molasses
Sugars of any kind rev up the biological activity in the native soil..

Dry Molasses is one of the very best organic ingredients to add to any garden because it feeds the microbes in the soil that keep your plant’s root systems healthy.
Here’s a photo of newly applied dry molasses:

The last step in this process is to water all of this into the soil and here’s where the miracle starts to happen!
All of that great stuff vanishes when you add water..
This is my “test area” after watering it all in:

Yes, looks just like the native soil.. {grin}

This area will now be a great place to experiment with next growing season because any plant that I decide to grow will now have the absolute best soil conditions possible and have a very balanced microbial condition in the soil to grow in..
Stay tuned!

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Looks good to me, its like one of Sticki's pudding recipe's. LOL, best of luck.

3 Jan, 2011


So, three cabbage plants and that will fill the plot when they are grown? :-)
Look forward to hearing your results, N2O.

3 Jan, 2011


{Chuckle} Bulbaholic..
Next growing season's experiment will include a variety of plants that have different root characteristics. Bulbs, tubers, small root balls, deep feeders, native plants, and a few exotics.
The purpose of all of this work is to research root development and the optimization of plant root health.
A lot happens above the soil, but I have a hunch that most plants benefit from improvements in the rooting environment regardless of what type of plant it might be.
There may also be a correlation between "plants in stress" that attract predators by increasing the sugar levels into the upper foliage VS "Happy plants" that do not generate sugars into the foliage because the root system is happy.

We'll see what happens next growing season!
The difficult part of this experiment will be "making it pretty". {chuckle} My wife insists that this area looks like "professional landscaping"..

That's where some of that "luck" might come into play as "Littlegs" said.. :-)

4 Jan, 2011



Tonight was the first night that I have been able to inspect my growing areas in the backyard in over a week.
We have had a nasty cold-snap and it has been below freezing 4 days in a row.

Tonight was not too bad with temps in the upper 40's, so I ventured out into the yard tonight. What I saw in that old area that I had organically prepared a few weeks ago, blew my mind.

Bulb plantings from over two years ago were breaking the soil everywhere! I have changed that area every growing season and planted new stuff every year and cannot remember what bulbs were planted, but they are coming up everywhere!

I'll just let it "rip" and see what happens...

This is absolutely amazing!!

15 Jan, 2011

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