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Author Topic: Home made compost for fruit trees  (Read 1061 times)

swapnil.tailor

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Home made compost for fruit trees
« on: March 22, 2018, 03:48:21 PM »
Wondering, if ppl use home made compost around fruit trees? If yes, how do your apply it? And also when do your apply it?
Also if you apply compost, do you still apply fertilizer (organic/inorganic) or that's not needed?

Asking this, as i started making my home made compost from leaves, grass clippings, coffee grounds, kitchen scrap (including egg shells). One batch is almost ready and second seems to be ready soon. I am planning to use it in fruit trees along with my vegetable garden, but wondering do my trees need fertilizer after that or compost is good enough.

Can ppl share their thoughts and experience with compost?

HibachiDrama

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Re: Home made compost for fruit trees
« Reply #1 on: March 22, 2018, 04:29:42 PM »
Depending upon your resources and climate it may be easier to just heavily mulch, though you may end up with various deficiencies depending upon what you mulch with, so you may need to supplement fertilizer. The other factor to consider is whether you can produce enough BALANCED compost to satisfy your needs in a cost/time efficient manner. Checking your average rainfall, you may encounter issues keeping your compost moist enough during the summer to have it break down effectively. Maybe start nitrogen fixing groundcover around the trees when the rainy season starts in September and mulch them under in April or May?

swapnil.tailor

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Re: Home made compost for fruit trees
« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2018, 04:38:07 PM »
Just for reference, i have a strawberry guava (6-7ft tall), couple of years old (not sure how many as previous owner has planted it). First year after we move, i haven't put any fertilizer or anything. Just water, and it gave small guava but a decent harvest. Next year, out of my knowledge, i try to make not till compost below the tree with Leaves and Grass clippings (no water for compost). Didn't do much and no fertilizer. Next year, it got loaded with guava and also bit bigger than before. The tree was so much loaded that we have to put support below the branches so it won't break with the riped guava. We weren't able to eat all and shared it with friends.

But that was all leaves and grass clippings. So started thinking that i can do that way for my other trees. But wondering if others have also tried that and if they have some best practices that i can follow.

fruitlovers

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Re: Home made compost for fruit trees
« Reply #3 on: March 22, 2018, 05:14:42 PM »
Home made compost is wonderful, and that would be enough, if you could make enough. But unless you have only one tree to fertilize, or you have tremendous access to organic matter, you are not going to make enough to feed all your trees. I consider it as a supplement to my fertilizing. I mostly use it around my banana trees, as they are heavy feeders and it's easy to just dump the compost around them. I just cover on top with some wood chips to keep flies population down.
Oscar

behlgarden

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Re: Home made compost for fruit trees
« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2018, 05:17:59 PM »
Wondering, if ppl use home made compost around fruit trees? If yes, how do your apply it? And also when do your apply it?
Also if you apply compost, do you still apply fertilizer (organic/inorganic) or that's not needed?

Asking this, as i started making my home made compost from leaves, grass clippings, coffee grounds, kitchen scrap (including egg shells). One batch is almost ready and second seems to be ready soon. I am planning to use it in fruit trees along with my vegetable garden, but wondering do my trees need fertilizer after that or compost is good enough.

Can ppl share their thoughts and experience with compost?


I do home made cocktail mix fertilizers, actually its market bought but mixed at home, some are organic and some are non-organic.
1. Seawead extract
2. Fish Emulshion
3. Fert All - 6 essential elements (Iron, Zinc, Magnesium, Copper, Molybdenum, Boron, Sulfur
4. Tiger Sulphur
5. Azomite (its great micronutrient).

I mix into 5 gal containers, at 20% ratio all combined. I dont really do any math on NPK, knowing all these things are good stuff. I do 3 doses/year. larger tree gets more. Nov, Mar, June.

look here, all organic, good stuff from growmore http://www.growmore.com/products/industry/agriculture-organic.html
« Last Edit: March 22, 2018, 05:23:55 PM by behlgarden »

pineislander

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Re: Home made compost for fruit trees
« Reply #5 on: March 22, 2018, 08:04:35 PM »
Wondering, if ppl use home made compost around fruit trees? If yes, how do your apply it? And also when do your apply it?
Also if you apply compost, do you still apply fertilizer (organic/inorganic) or that's not needed?

Asking this, as i started making my home made compost from leaves, grass clippings, coffee grounds, kitchen scrap (including egg shells). One batch is almost ready and second seems to be ready soon. I am planning to use it in fruit trees along with my vegetable garden, but wondering do my trees need fertilizer after that or compost is good enough.

Can ppl share their thoughts and experience with compost?

Yes, I use a compost around the fruit trees. I think the best time is early before the trees naturally break dormancy and are ready to flush new growth, but any time is better than never. Some people feel that trees, and especially trees  which are native to forested conditions, enjoy a different sort of compost than annualized plants. The thinking is that tree compost should imitate what a tree would experience naturally in a forest. In a forest you might not have grass clippings or manure and the resulting fast bacterial decomposition. Instead you would have a more woody or leafy compost slowly breaking down by fungi. Tree roots can live in symbiosis with fungi which extend the trees effective root zone by attachment to a widespread fungal web far beyond the actual root zone.


BajaJohn

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Re: Home made compost for fruit trees
« Reply #6 on: March 23, 2018, 09:33:08 AM »
duplicate post
« Last Edit: March 23, 2018, 09:35:27 AM by BajaJohn »

BajaJohn

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Re: Home made compost for fruit trees
« Reply #7 on: March 23, 2018, 09:34:26 AM »
It sounds like your guava provided a good answer for you. It would probably take a year for mulch to decompose and provide nutrients which explains the year delay. Compost is equally recommended for trees although with both you are advised to keep the materials away from the trunk of the tree so that retained water doesn't encourage fungal infection.
Neither mulch nor compost necessarily provides micronutrients which your soil may need and gain from other supplements. However, phosphate from fertiliser may inhibit mycorrhizal symbiosis and some sites recommend avoiding fertiliser. It's going to depend on how much material you have to compost/mulch.
I prefer compost to mulch only because I generate large quantities of garden waste from trees and mulch would overwhelm the garden. In a dry climate you need to keep your compost pile moist. I wrap mine with a polythene sheet to reduce drying out and add water every week or so. Even then I encounter dry areas when I turn the pile. Both processes speed breakdown and have compost ready in 2-3 months.
Another way to quickly recycle some of your organic waste is vermiculture. I use a horizontal plastic 55 gallon drum with an access hole cut out of the side and add fresh waste every day or so. It is on my irrigation system and gets about 2 gallons of water per day. I drain that off every day from a tap in the bottom of the drum and use the liquid to feed the trees and other plants. Every few weeks I clean out the drum and get a wheelbarrow full of rich, black soil.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2018, 09:39:28 AM by BajaJohn »

Linh

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Re: Home made compost for fruit trees
« Reply #8 on: March 23, 2018, 10:59:49 AM »
Once every few weeks, I go to friends and family food store taking buckets of coffee ground and tofu byproducts, eggshells, organic compose, some worm casting mix it up. Age it in large 25 gal pots. I then added kitchen and garden scraps whenever. Water it once a week. After few months, I see lots and lots of worms all sizes. I use fish bone meals, seaweed,  mix it with the compose, fertilize all my fruit trees.
Once in a long while I mix mycorrhizae, water with molasses and pour it on the base of the plant-root.
I think the fruits are sweeter and good productivity.

fruitlovers

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Re: Home made compost for fruit trees
« Reply #9 on: March 23, 2018, 05:43:03 PM »
It sounds like your guava provided a good answer for you. It would probably take a year for mulch to decompose and provide nutrients which explains the year delay. Compost is equally recommended for trees although with both you are advised to keep the materials away from the trunk of the tree so that retained water doesn't encourage fungal infection.
Neither mulch nor compost necessarily provides micronutrients which your soil may need and gain from other supplements. However, phosphate from fertiliser may inhibit mycorrhizal symbiosis and some sites recommend avoiding fertiliser. It's going to depend on how much material you have to compost/mulch.
I prefer compost to mulch only because I generate large quantities of garden waste from trees and mulch would overwhelm the garden. In a dry climate you need to keep your compost pile moist. I wrap mine with a polythene sheet to reduce drying out and add water every week or so. Even then I encounter dry areas when I turn the pile. Both processes speed breakdown and have compost ready in 2-3 months.
Another way to quickly recycle some of your organic waste is vermiculture. I use a horizontal plastic 55 gallon drum with an access hole cut out of the side and add fresh waste every day or so. It is on my irrigation system and gets about 2 gallons of water per day. I drain that off every day from a tap in the bottom of the drum and use the liquid to feed the trees and other plants. Every few weeks I clean out the drum and get a wheelbarrow full of rich, black soil.
Compost definitely has micronutrients in it. If you are eating food without micronutrients you would not live very long. Amount of micronutrients is going to depend on the type of food you are eating. So yes the quality of the compost will depend on the quality of your food.
Oscar

greenman62

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Re: Home made compost for fruit trees
« Reply #10 on: March 25, 2018, 11:14:43 AM »
not all compost is created equal.
and if you are using it for fruit trees, you would want a compost heavy in carbon(browns) and less of the greens.
the difference is referred to as "bacterially dominant" or "fungal dominant"
fungi are better at breaking down woody material, and bacteria, the greener stuff + food scraps etc...
that said you will have some of both in all compost.
and one of the main benefits of compost, is not just the NPK and micro-nutes
but, also the micro-organisms....
the fungi, bacteria, and the larger things that eat them like  amoeba , protozoa, nematodes, etc...
and larger things yet that eat them... arthropods, earthworms etc...
so the best thing about compost is it can provide "missing" micro-organisms
(protozoa for example) to "fix" the part of the food-web that is not working right.

all those guys eat and poo.
 they excrete large amounts of waste -called a "waste stream" ...
in live healthy soil, this is enough to feed most plants
my "guess" is that some plants, hybridized by humans, produce so much fruit, and grow so fast
that the demand is hard to fill, but even then, i think good compost and live soil should be enough.

also
each one of these micro-organisms HAS to have enough boron, zinc and other micro-nutes to live.
so its hard to have a deficiency with live healthy soil
i do infuse my compost with fish emulsion and molasses
and try to add as diverse a set of plants as i can.
this creates a diverse set of bacteria and fungi

lots of research has been done on this in recent years.
this website is by one of the top scientists.
http://www.soilfoodweb.com/

She has lots of videos too
https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=Elaine+Ingham

one on compost
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fnXsw5EzuM8



BajaJohn

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Re: Home made compost for fruit trees
« Reply #11 on: March 26, 2018, 12:15:36 PM »
Compost definitely has micronutrients in it. If you are eating food without micronutrients you would not live very long. Amount of micronutrients is going to depend on the type of food you are eating. So yes the quality of the compost will depend on the quality of your food.
As you say, the content of the compost depends on its source material. It may not apply to the OPs garden, but I was considering the possibility of "leaves, grass clippings" from micronutrient depleted soil. Recycling such compost will return their micronutrients to the soil but will not provide the necessary increase in missing micronutrients.

scottsurf

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Re: Home made compost for fruit trees
« Reply #12 on: March 27, 2018, 06:30:18 PM »
i agree mulching fruit trees is alot easier than adding compost i would add the compost to the vegetable garden and mulch fruit trees with thing high in nitrogen when they are young like grass clippings, green leaves, composted manure, and then when there more mature with things high in carbon brown leaves wood chips   

i let grass, ground cover, weeds  grow in the winter when we get our rain and our fruit trees are mostly dormant then in spring i cut them down our just heavaly mulch on top of them. seems to really get the soil life going

i also grow fast growing nitrogen fixing trees (acacia decurrens works best for me 15 to 20 feet a year drought tolerant pollard it and it grows back to same hieght)
you can smell it in the soil

Suebelle

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Re: Home made compost for fruit trees
« Reply #13 on: May 09, 2018, 04:12:21 PM »
Being inspired by YouTube video I started a pile of compost in a couple of big pots. I continued adding some greens, some browns, egg shells, coffee grinds and especially bananas. After a couple of weeks I found worms inside and in some time I had the blackest compost I saw, just beautiful. Then I added perlite and worm castings in regular potting mix which I always use and planted a tree on the top of this home made concoction. It s still to early to say more but it looks promising - to me.  :)
On the top I use grass clippings from my neighbor as a mulch.
It looked really nice and I hope it will work.
Btw city of San Jose provides worm composting bins for residents for very low price.

palmcity

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Re: Home made compost for fruit trees
« Reply #14 on: May 09, 2018, 05:13:20 PM »
Being inspired by YouTube video I started a pile of compost in a couple of big pots. I continued adding some greens, some browns, egg shells, coffee grinds and especially bananas. After a couple of weeks I found worms inside and in some time I had the blackest compost I saw, just beautiful. Then I added perlite and worm castings in regular potting mix which I always use and planted a tree on the top of this home made concoction.

It looked really nice and I hope it will work.

"Use caution in deciding to plant trees on top of compost"
In my location, the unamended normal yard soil is a lot "poorer" than what I could compost. Planting a tree on top of compost in my area would tend to keep the roots within the compost without branching out into the yard. This would probably result in fast growth the first year or two and then slower than average growth in later years.

 

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