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South Yorkshire, United Kingdom Gb

Price of soil/compost for veggies.

I think the bags of veggie compost is very expensive as I am starting from scratch. I am trying to stick to containers. Are there any cheaper alternatives? Of course I could use new rotovater and use the ground. It is just that with a shared garden I only wanted to use the ground as borders around the grass to plant. Neighbour never comes in garden but cant dig all the grass out and have an allotement style garden, she may have something to say about that. lol.



I am in your situation. and I talked to my nabours, and they said we love the garden but don't want to do it and gave me permition to do what ever I wanted, and one of the ladies has even come out and helped, we now have eight fruit trees down the middle of the lawrn soft fruit in the borders which I have widened and strawberries in the hanging baskets, and they are for every one,including hearbs and I have not neglected the flowers, I realy have not much else to do except a fishing trip to the welsh coast about once a month ,so it is pretty well my life, and im'e loving it,

25 Jan, 2010


Buying soil in small quantities, ie bags, is never cheap. On the other hand, buying by the lorry load is probably too much soil for you and the quality can be very variable. Anyway, for growing in containers soil, on its own, does not make a good growing medium as it compacts too easily. For growing vegies in containers I would suggest buying the cheapest potting compost that you can find or, some growers recomend the compost from grow bags.
Why not try talking to your neighbour and asking if you cannot dig up at least part of the lawn? Offer her a share of the produce in return. Otherwise why not try and do as we have - we grow our vegetables in the gardens of two neighbours in return for sharing or garden tidying.

25 Jan, 2010


Buying bags of veggie compost is about the most expensive way of starting that I can think of. Have a nosy around your neighbours gardens (or the local allotments) and ask them what they think is the best way to start, you never know they might just offer you enough to get you started. In the long term the best way is to make your own! ! ! By that I mean compost all your veg waste (peelings etc) add your grass cuttings and shred all your personal documents and add that as well. If you intend to stick with containers then you should be able to make enough to keep you going with one bin. Don't forget that you will only add to your "stock" of soil every year.
Good luck and the best way of all is to go to your local allotments and put your name down. You never know it might not take you thirty years to get one!

25 Jan, 2010


all good suggestions thanks. I have multiuse compost and veggie compost, 2 of each on the way (60 litres each) and then the potato grow bag of 25 litres that came today.

If I mixed that in the ground with the existing soil in the borders (or used a small patch of grassed area), would that be a good enough mix? Would be 265 litres of proper bought stuff mixed in.

25 Jan, 2010


I am getting a little confused now. I always thought you needed soil (in ground) to which you added compost to make it richer in order to grow better produce. At least that is what we did in Cape Town, but then again it was very sandy african ground.

The soil here is already very black and looks rich enough to me to use as is. But adding the compost that I have ordered would make it even richer, especially if I put the pony dung on it as well.?????

In S.A. I grew carrots in the sand! and only mixed a little compost in with the rest of the veggies.

25 Jan, 2010


Cammacbusby, I am getting two messages from you here. One, you are growing in containers; two, you are growing in the open ground?
For growing in containers you need a 'potting' type compost.
For growing in the open ground you need a decent soil.
I would keep the expensive composts that you have bought for the containers.
For growing in the ground I would use the pony dung after it has rotted down a bit. This will add nutriment and humus. If you want to improve the soil in the border for this year I would add composted bark (now sold as 'soil improver') and some bone meal.

25 Jan, 2010


You are right bulbaholic, I bought the veggie, multipurpose and potato stuff to put in my containers I have coming.

It was an afterthought to start doing beds depending on the neighbour/shared garden situation, but she said go ahead and do anything.

So will start with the containers, then add beds with rotovator thing when I need more space. Will start bringing home and rotting down pony dung in the corner of the garden to go in ground beds later in the summer.

I was thinking ahead, so far all I have is one packet of 10 seed potatoes, one packet of mixed courgette things and one packet of spinach beet. Next month will order cherry tomatoes and lettuce. I only have three containers so far so will need more of them. Have to put together the plastic greenhouse first for starting the seeds of course.

25 Jan, 2010

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