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A garden is only as good as the ground that it's planted in. Discussion forum for the many ways to improve the soil where we plant our gardens.

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Old February 24, 2016   #31
Farmette
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Thanks for the replies. I think that there are situations where working leaves in to the top layer can be beneficial. For me, it has helped loosen up the soil, increasing aeration.
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Old February 25, 2016   #32
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just grabbed a 50# bag of CSM, which reads:

Crude Protien, Min.......... 41.0%
Crude Fat, Min................ 0.5%
Crude Fiber, Max............ 14.0%

Ingredients:

Solvent Extracted Cottonseed Meal


As far as the organic topic, there might be trace amounts of pesticide in the csm, but the term organic is an ambiguous label of sorts. I do not really add or spray anything other than BT once or twice a year on the plants. and application of TT (this year PT). I would think that rain in various parts of the world (and this country) could produce more garbage in a single downpour. Personally, can't see much harm, but if I start to grow a third eye - I will let you know.

Picking up 3 yards of compost Saturday.
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Old February 25, 2016   #33
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Originally Posted by Farmette View Post
Thanks for the replies. I think that there are situations where working leaves in to the top layer can be beneficial. For me, it has helped loosen up the soil, increasing aeration.
You do what is best for your garden you can always add nitrogen.

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just grabbed a 50# bag of CSM, which reads:

Crude Protien, Min.......... 41.0%
Crude Fat, Min................ 0.5%
Crude Fiber, Max............ 14.0%

Ingredients:

Solvent Extracted Cottonseed Meal


As far as the organic topic, there might be trace amounts of pesticide in the csm, but the term organic is an ambiguous label of sorts. I do not really add or spray anything other than BT once or twice a year on the plants. and application of TT (this year PT). I would think that rain in various parts of the world (and this country) could produce more garbage in a single downpour. Personally, can't see much harm, but if I start to grow a third eye - I will let you know.

Picking up 3 yards of compost Saturday.
Please make sure you plant some beans in the compost before you use it.
This will tell you if it has any trace amounts of weed killer left in it.'
Better to sacrifice a few beans than a whole crop of tomato plants or what ever you are planting.
The beans will sprout and soon die if it has it in it.
It is from people using this stuff on their yards and ending up in the compost.
We have had more than a few folks learn this the hard way.

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Old February 25, 2016   #34
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I'll reassert that cottonseed meal IS NOT ideal if you are attempting an organic garden. It has restricted usage based on NOP guidelines and many state guidelines suggest you use other sources simply because of remaining pesticide residues. Many other states do not even allow its usage as a possible organic amendment for the same reason. Not to mention that much of cotton grown any more is genetically modified, which prevents it's usage as an organic amendment as well.

Cottonseed meal/cake is nothing more than a waste byproduct of the cottonseed oil industry. The oil is chemically extracted, generally with hexane. That residue also remains, although it is generally considered negligible based on how it interacts with the environment post processing.

Truth is, the only people saying emphatically there is no pesticide residue left in the seed meal, is the cotton industry.

It has nothing to do with "ethical sourcing" concerns. It has everything to do with the factual reality of the product.

Regardless, to each their own. I'm not attempting to change opinions, merely attempting to provide factual information. I'll not even bother to discuss the issue of aflatoxin residuals in cotton crops...

Last edited by TheUrbanFarmer; February 25, 2016 at 02:27 PM.
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Old February 25, 2016   #35
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Please make sure you plant some beans in the compost before you use it.
This will tell you if it has any trace amounts of weed killer left in it.'
Worth
Interesting. Haven't heard of that, but good point. I get my compost and supersoil from American Composter, which is a company that (I believe) cooks their compost by strict regulation.

Not sure where they get their composting materials, but probably yard waste and the such.

I would think that weed killer had a short shelf life; like roundup. Thought in went inert after about 60 days applied.

I will ask a few more questions about their process. Thanks for the heads up.
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Old February 25, 2016   #36
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I'll reassert that cottonseed meal IS NOT ideal if you are attempting an organic garden. It has restricted usage based on NOP guidelines and many state guidelines suggest you use other sources simply because of remaining pesticide residues. Many other states do not even allow its usage as a possible organic amendment for the same reason. Not to mention that much of cotton grown any more is genetically modified, which prevents it's usage as an organic amendment as well.

Cottonseed meal/cake is nothing more than a waste byproduct of the cottonseed oil industry. The oil is chemically extracted, generally with hexane. That residue also remains, although it is generally considered negligible based on how it interacts with the environment post processing.

Truth is, the only people saying emphatically there is no pesticide residue left in the seed meal, is the cotton industry.

It has nothing to do with "ethical sourcing" concerns. It has everything to do with the factual reality of the product.

Regardless, to each their own. I'm not attempting to change opinions, merely attempting to provide factual information.
I didn't realize there was a large debate about this, but learning. Seems rather ludicrous to argue; put some under the scope or do some testing. The public would like to know. Truth is, the waste ends up somewhere on this tiny planet and weaves it way into our daily existence at some point.

I'm not familiar with NOP or state guidelines regarding its use. In any event, it will be used very sparingly; and also used with my azaleas and camillias (which I read csm was a great amendment for both species).
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Old February 25, 2016   #37
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I should clarify something, that has slipped my mind:

My concern is not in regards to human consumption of trace pesticides but rather focused on the impact that such pesticide residues have on the soil biota and their ability to populate. Without thriving bacterial populations an organic system fails as the soil food web remains incomplete or greatly hindered.

Perhaps that clarification will help you understand more clearly why I'm willing to speak out against it's usage.
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Old February 25, 2016   #38
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I should clarify something, that has slipped my mind:

My concern is not in regards to human consumption of trace pesticides but rather focused on the impact that such pesticide residues have on the soil biota and their ability to populate. Without thriving bacterial populations an organic system fails as the soil food web remains incomplete or greatly hindered.

Perhaps that clarification will help you understand more clearly why I'm willing to speak out against it's usage.
valid point. would hate to disrupt what I have going on. it's hard for me to believe that there is not solid research on this very common byproduct. csm is a widely used addendum that is sold everywhere.

I will read some more before I touch the stuff.
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Old February 25, 2016   #39
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Interesting. Haven't heard of that, but good point. I get my compost and supersoil from American Composter, which is a company that (I believe) cooks their compost by strict regulation.

Not sure where they get their composting materials, but probably yard waste and the such.

I would think that weed killer had a short shelf life; like roundup. Thought in went inert after about 60 days applied.

I will ask a few more questions about their process. Thanks for the heads up.
Some years ago PREEN for lawns contaminated large composting operations, I believe in washington state.

Not directly, but through the active ingredient in Confront, the herbicide that was put into Preen for lawns. It was a pre-emerge and post-emerge herbicide in one application/product.
The lawn grass pulled it up and retained it in the clippings. Those clippings were gathered and sent to the composting facilities where it remained (even after active heating) and contaminated the compost. Eventually was spread back onto gardens and killed stuff.

2-4 D will do this too.

I wonder if Imidicloprid (Merit), a systemic insecticide, would harm soil biota too? It is a soil applied drench on shrubbery, which the roots absorb and pump throughout the plant, lasts an entire growing season.
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Old February 25, 2016   #40
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Imid should be banned out right in my opinion. Along with all other neonicotinoids. While they are not single-handedly responsible for colony collapse in bees, they are a large contributing factor. There is a reason they were banned across the EU.

We really have fallen behind in the USA in regards to protecting our farmlands. A vast majority of farmers no longer even know what to do outside of what their various product reps tell them. That applies to fertilizer and pesticide usage.

When I first started farming over a decade ago I was absolutely baffled when trying to discuss methodologies with large agricorp farmers. They really had no clue other than, read this label or read this chart. It's sad.

Last edited by TheUrbanFarmer; February 25, 2016 at 04:17 PM.
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Old February 25, 2016   #41
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Imid should be banned out right in my opinion. Along with all other neonicotinoids. While they are not single-handedly responsible for colony collapse in bees, they are a large contributing factor. There is a reason they were banned across the EU.

We really have fallen behind in the USA in regards to protecting our farmlands. A vast majority of farmers no longer even know what to do outside of what their various product reps tell them. That applies to fertilizer and pesticide usage.

When I first started farming over a decade ago I was absolutely baffled when trying to discuss methodologies with large agricorp farmers. They really had no clue other than, read this label or read this chart. It's sad.
That's quite the generalization.
The real story lies in the middle.
Organics will not save the planet and conventional farming will not kill it.
I am an Ag planner and deal with 99% conventional farmers. Most of them are conservation minded and do a heck of a job building soil, no-till, and use resources wisely.
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Old February 25, 2016   #42
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What's more, is that everyone's all arguing about the wrong thing.
We should be focusing more on what we are growing not how we are growing it. We need to get out of the grain business.
Organic cheesy poofs are still cheesy poofs .
When we shift the diet away from grains and the crops that makes those foods, then we can talk about HOW we are growing our crops.

Last edited by PureHarvest; February 25, 2016 at 06:28 PM.
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Old February 27, 2016   #43
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Thanks for the replies. I think that there are situations where working leaves in to the top layer can be beneficial. For me, it has helped loosen up the soil, increasing aeration.
Hi Chris,
Our garden aren't very far apart, maybe 10 miles or so, but due to the glaciers, soil can vary greatly within short distances. My soil is basically dolomite clay. It is alkaline with a PH of 7.4 and lacks structure (organic matter) and nitrogen big time.
I compost leaves and other plant matter to help the structure of the soil. Adding cotton seed meal or other grain meals to a compost pile or garden to help boost the nitrogen level, sounds like an excellent idea. It may be a good source of slow release fertilizer that would benefit both the garden plants and the microbes in the soil.
I have been toying with this idea for awhile and may try this in both a test compost pile and a section of the garden. Thank you Worth for bring this to my attention again with your posts. And thanks again to all for posting.
Dutch
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Old February 29, 2016   #44
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sprinkled the csm and also lightly salted with left over TT and covered with composted soil. no till, just de-weeded by hand. raked into top 4". my mater plants only sprouted last week, so still too young. but we be getting there.


weather outlook looks surprisingly favorable; which means all hell will break loose, or the gardening gods giveth us that 1 in 10 year perfect early spring. i'll prepare for the first, and hope for the later.
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Old February 29, 2016   #45
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Hi Chris,
Our garden aren't very far apart, maybe 10 miles or so, but due to the glaciers, soil can vary greatly within short distances. My soil is basically dolomite clay. It is alkaline with a PH of 7.4 and lacks structure (organic matter) and nitrogen big time.
I compost leaves and other plant matter to help the structure of the soil. Adding cotton seed meal or other grain meals to a compost pile or garden to help boost the nitrogen level, sounds like an excellent idea. It may be a good source of slow release fertilizer that would benefit both the garden plants and the microbes in the soil.
I have been toying with this idea for awhile and may try this in both a test compost pile and a section of the garden. Thank you Worth for bring this to my attention again with your posts. And thanks again to all for posting.
Dutch
I would highly suggest you tarp or cover your compost piles to keep rain from leaching nutrients out of the pile. Occasionally uncover or hand water to keep it from drying out though.
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