Sometimes referred to as ‘gardener’s gold’, the benefits of adding animal manure to your vegetable plot cannot be underestimated – where there’s muck there’s magic.
It may well be the most ancient trick in the history of gardening but adding animal manures to your soil will never get old. For good reason has the rich, sweetly smelling well-rotted manure heap acquired the name of ‘gardeners gold’ lot it is the finest natural soil improver you are likely to come across.
Lucy Halliday explains: We mulch the heavy red clay on which our garden is based every year with a deep layer of horse manure and the results speak for themselves: produce abounds and the soil is open, warm and easy to work. If you have never given muck a try or are addicted to synthetic fertiliser pellets, give manure one season to work its magic and you will be glad you did, two seasons and you will be in lore. It will enrich your soil ecosystem, feed your plants, even out any issues with heavy or overly light soil textures and reduce the amount of watering you need to do.
It can occasionally be a bit more work to obtain for free but it’s very fulfilling to leave a stable yard with your auto boot groaning under the weight of a muck-filled bag.
However, you are able to now order a huge bag or a pallet of convenient sacks at the click of a mouse so it has never been easier to overhaul your veg garden and kick it into superb productivity.
Manure use has a history as venerable as agriculture and even hunter gatherers understood it helped plant development before that.
More information for theme of manure you can find here.
The cycle of productivity between the earth, domesticated animals and humans is a holy one, turning it into food in a way that keeps equilibrium within ecosystems and choosing a waste product.
Manure adds more than simply soil nutrients; it adds flora and earth fauna. Raising nutrient availability and opening up the feel, including encouraging tons of worms. It creates rich, moisture-retentive soil, considerably more easy to work and immune to erosion or compaction.
Every farming culture the world over has employed manure to improve their soil and there is surviving evidence for its early uses. At the ancient home of agriculture in the Fertile Crescent, between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, in modern-day Iraq, clay tablets have been found documenting manure usage from the reign of the Mesopotamian King Sargon of the Akkadian dynasty. The ancient Greeks, Romans and Egyptians were all at it too, using different types of manure such as goat, sheep and cattle for different purposes.
Where To Find Your Muck
A very good way to get hold of manure, possibly for free, is to approach your local stable yards or farms directly. They often have existing muck heaps or will let you collect and bag up fresh manure for yourself for home composting. Some even let you pillage piles of well-rotted stuff for no charge if you bag it yourself. Others sell it for a small fee ready bagged. Try your phone directory to find local stables. Do check first, however, if the grazing or livestock arc treated with pesticides as you may want to consider this when applying it to your soil.
Many allotment associations have standing arrangements with local farms or stables to deliver muck to your plot on request (generally for a nominal fee to cover delivery). Ask your plot representative or other plot holders where they get theirs.