Berkeley: I Can’t Believe It’s Chicken!

Yard Products

Author: Berkeley King

(Approximately a 2-minute read)

 “Our need will be the real creator.”  Plato

“Necessity is the mother of invention.” Old English Proverb

    I feel safe in saying we have all felt the pains of shortages over the last couple of years.  Also, we have dealt with supply issues in pretty much every aspect of our business.  We ran into an issue a couple of months ago trying to obtain a very popular product:  Mushroom Compost.  What we could get was far away, so freight was not feasible.  Therefore, we were forced to look for other options.

  We had been doing bagged Chicken Manure Compost from Humble Acres Farms at our Greenville and Simpsonville locations over the past 2 years.  Normally we would order a few pallets a year from Humble Acres and didn’t think much more about it. 

It came time to re-order for the season, and we realized this product was something we could buy to fill our empty Mushroom Compost bins. Furthermore, after thoroughly researching the product and its differences from the mushroom product, we believed we could provide a lot superior option to our consumers at a slightly higher price.

Here is what we have learned:

  1. The Chicken Manure Compost (CMC) has no smell and will not burn the roots of your plants whilst in comparison, Mushroom Compost (MC) has an ammonia smell.
  2. CMC has had the Ammonia converted to Nitrate during the composting period, so it is 100% plant available.  MC Nitrogen has to be converted by the soil microbes before it is useful.
  3. CMC has no large particles and looks like soil due to composting.  During composting, CMC reaches temps of 135 degrees which kills weed seeds, salmonella, etc.  MC is pulled directly off mushroom beds and very little composting takes place.
  4. CMC consists of .75% Nitrogen, .95% Phosphorus, .50% Potassium.  MC routinely consists of .25% of each Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium.  You can use less than 1/2 the amount of CMC to cover the same area you would cover with MC.  CMC also has roughly 3% Calcium.

     I have seen pictures of plants growing directly in pure CMC.  If you are doing small spots or raised beds, you could mix at a ratio of 1 bag of CMC with 1 bag of our 2.8 cu/ft Sun-Gro growers soil. 

I personally have about a 2000 sq/ft garden, so I am planning on having 3 scoops delivered to till into my soil this month, along with my usual 6-month treatment of Love Your Soil (if the ground dries out, fingers crossed).  Needless to say, we are excited about this product and look forward to the success stories of our customers! 

Bagged and Bulk CMC is available at all our locations.

Pricing is as follows:

50lb Bag – $5.99

1/2 Scoop – $39.00

1 Scoop – $65.00

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