Post by heirloomfan on May 16, 2022 13:37:07 GMT -5
I have used Kellogg brand bagged soil in the past and had no issues. Bought some again this spring and the quality has changed a lot. I used it to put some tomato seedlings into bigger pots. Seedlings were all doing well, but quickly began to decline in the Kellogg soil. I had to go out yesterday and buy another brand and repotted all of my tomatoes.
I checked on the Home Depot reviews and others were reporting the same problem. It’s very disappointing because I could have lost all of my tomatoes. It appears that they now use a lot of fillers like wood chips and even little pebbles. They replied to the reviews that they use aged wood products but they must not since it obviously ties up the nitrogen and the plants struggle. They also said they recommend that you add your own fertilizer to improve the product.
I should have paused when I saw a lot of fillers but didn’t anticipate how quickly the seedlings would start showing issues.
I think with Covid a lot of companies couldn’t get the quality or quantity they usually use but in this case the product changed and not for the better. Just wanted to pass that along.
I had some issues in 2020 with Black Kow after using it for years and haven't bought any since. I generally buy top soil and amend it for my raised beds but notice the quality can vary greatly from one time to the next. I generally look for or ask if there's a torn bag in which I can see the contents before I buy. I did luck into some organic garden soil on clearance last year that is pretty nice.
My issue with bagged soil is gnats. Get them every time the last couple years. As long as I "cook" the soil, it's ok. But this year they showed up anyway.
Mumsey, I remember a long while back, brownrexx said she kept her soils outside over winter to get a good freeze and that it had good effect against gnats. I've tried that method and so far have not had recurring gnat issues. But of course, it's a plan way ahead sort of thing.
I garden ~~~ Therefore I am
OG Member since 2002 ~~~ Southeastern PA ~~~ Zone 7a
Post by heirloomfan on May 23, 2022 13:40:52 GMT -5
We bought some bags of the Kellogg soil in the fall, I opened the bags and allowed them to get any winter rain/snow and have done this many times before. But still seemed this time to not have helped with aging all of those wood chips and shavings.
The last thing you want when it's time to put your seedlings in bigger pots is to have them almost die off due to the poor potting soil. Not sure what the issue is other than some of the companies trying to stay afloat during these times to have to resort to cheaper ingredients.
But they have to know that it will cost them their reputation if they produce inferior product which has no value to plants. One of our local independent plant nurseries makes it's own soil blends which I've tried and they are good. They can be a bit expensive but I might go back to using them, keep watching for their sales and stock up. Have also seen others posting on You Tube that they are getting the wrong seeds or ones that aren't viable and this is from companies that have been around a while. Seems to have started with the pandemic and continues.
Just another thing that we need to watch now I guess.
Interesting. I bought Kellog once years ago and was impressed with the quality for the price. No Home Depot in my town, so my go-to is “Jungle Growth” from Lowe’s which is excellent quality for a very low price, it has a small amount of woody debris, but they are generous with perlite and they add some fertilizer and some of the profits go to wildlife conservation. I love their slogan “Turn Your Yard Into a Jungle”, which I did. I bought 10 bags of Black Kow the other day and there was zero wood in it, maybe a regional thing or just a bad batch? I don’t like buying it because I worry about all the chemicals in the cows’ diet, but it’s cheap and has a lot of nitrogen in it. Bagged soil is so expensive. This year I nearly destroyed my little truck moving 6 cubic yards of compost from the county landfill to my house. It’s only $30 per cubic yard, whereas buying bags of soil is closer to $150 per cubic yard, but the compost I got from the county was entirely devoid of fertility. It looked nice and was well sifted and the piles were steaming and it was dark black, but all my crops came up yellow and I had to spend another $40 on concentrated chicken manure to amend the 6 cubic yards and make it useable. There are a handful of rare plants I really care about and those I splurge on and buy bags of FoxFarm Happy Frog and Ocean Forest 🤤
Zone 8b, Deep South, coastal, not too far from Savannah
Well, in the fall I empty all my pots of annuals (dirt only ) into a large garbage can. I cover the can and let it cook in the sun until spring. Then I add some over winter chicken poo that’s been broken down and a bit of fertilizer to the mix. This I use to fill my pots anew. There is a mix of peat, coir, and perlite in those pots. This past week I added to a small bed that’s 3 x8’ and planted annuals among some perennial to fill it in and there’s is still half a can left. I used to just pop into the compost pile but this works better for me. I feel like I’m not wasting another reusable product.
raphanus, it's amazing all the different soils that are available in every region yet I can't find Kelloggs or any of the brands you mention besides Black Kow and I quit buying it because I think I got a bad batch the last time. It seems just about everything is Miracle-Gro or Scott's here, though I did find a great deal on organic Miracle-Gro garden soil last year.
You’re right...everything IS miracle grow.... My sister is moving into her new place soon and had huge patio pots to fill. She was SHOCKED that my garbage can was filled and that the soil looked beautiful. Another convert.😊