When you are creating the perfect garden, one of the most important considerations is the compost you will be using. Many established green thumbs prefer to ake their own compost, and while this can be rewarding, for those who are just starting out, it can also be highly confusing. You should invest in mushroom compost as a nutrient-dense starting base for any garden, but you do need to consider what types of plants or flowers you will be growing.
Compost should always be seen and used as a soil improver, and is not the same as what you put in with pot plants to keep them fertile. If you are unsure where to start when choosing compost for your garden, below is a simple and easy-to-understand guide.
Plants And Vegetables
If you are going to be growing plants and vegetables, you will need a different type of compost than you would for flowers or shrubs. Plants and vegetables need a more nutrient-rich compost, such as mushroom compost. Vegetables also need to taste good, and the type of compost you use will have an impact on this.
Organic compost is ideal, as a synthetic option might have an effect on the flavour of any vegetables. Plants need to have compost that will not harm their roots and that does not contain a high level of synthetic chemicals. You will need to dig plenty of mushroom compost into your soil before you plant any vegetables so that when they are planted, the soil is ready and already rich in nutrients.
Flowers are much more delicate than plants or vegetables, which is why you should look for a slightly different compost to the one used for vegetables. For example, you could use a specialised rose and shrub mix if you are interested in growing roses. This mix will usually contain compost, sand, and clay for moist and well-drained soil.
Flower compost will feed your plants for up to four months at the outset, slowly releasing the nutrients into the soil whenever the plants are watered. This leads to healthy flower growth and stronger roots. The clay granules will release water over time for when your flowers need it the most, and the structure of the soil will also improve.
If you are going to be planting seedlings, it is important to remember that seedlings are small and delicate, and will need a light compost in order to prevent them from being damaged. Any compost that is too heavy will lead to lower germination rates and unhealthy plants and roots. Seedlings need finer compost that is well-drained and not lumpy.
Seedlings need nutrient-rich compost to help them to grow and flourish but it can be difficult to find a balance between nutrient-rich and too heavy. The compost should aid water retention while also offering perfect drainage. Potting soil might be a good idea for new seedlings, as it is lighter than other compost options. Seedlings need to be carefully monitored and need a steady supply of moisture, important aspects to look out for in your compost choice.
Pot plants are a favourite of almost every gardener, especially those who might only have a small space to work in. However, the plants in pots are completely reliant on organic compost for their nutrients. You should opt for compost with clay, bark, and sand for the best nutrient release and ideal water drainage.
You might be wondering why you should opt for bark in your potting soil or compost, and the answer is simple. Bark breaks down over time and releases nutrients while it is breaking down. This helps the plants to remain healthy and thriving, especially as they do not have access to other nutrients found in the soil. When potting soil has compost in it, there will be air pockets that allow for more air and easier drainage.
General Purpose Compost
For those who simply want to improve their garden overall, you can look into general-purpose organic compost. It can be used to increase the humus in the soil and is ideal for plants, vegetables, and flowers. And for clay-based or sandy soils, this compost can help to improve drainage as well as water retention.
You can combine this compost with your lawn dressing to improve the nutrient content of this dressing and reducing the stress of having weeds. Choosing specific compost for your gardening needs can help to ensure that whatever you plant will thrive and reach its fullest growth potential. You should invest in organic compost as much as you possibly can to maintain and boost the quality of your soil.