GoodSeed Farm > Mushroom Compost is a Twofer

Mushroom Compost is a Twofer



Mushroom Compost: Fertilizer & Soil Builder

Most gardeners in southern Ohio struggle with hard clay soil, making it difficult to grow nice vegetables. Conventional fertilizers like 10-10-10 make the problem worse, doing nothing to build healthy garden soil long term. It’s rare to find a row-crop vegetable garden or home landscape with loose, rich, well-drained and healthy soil. Raised beds help with the compaction problem, but in order to have fluffy, fertile soil you must add fresh organic material into your garden every season.

Mushroom compost is a one-step soil conditioner that has a magic effect on your landscape, lawn, or vegetable garden. A by-product of mushroom farming, this wonderful dark, rich, moist mixture will fertilize your plants while breaking up clay soils. It is a quick, sure-fire way to boost the performance of almost everything you grow.

Mushroom compost is an organic blend of wheat straw, peat moss, cottonseed meal, cottonseed hulls, corncobs, cocoa bean shells, gypsum, lime, chicken litter and/or horse bedding. These materials are thoroughly composted and sterilized, and then placed into growing trays for mushroom cultivation. Each batch must be rotated out within 18-20 days before mushroom-killing pathogens can get established. Still rich in nutrients, the mixture is bagged or shipped in bulk, as a soil enhancer. 

Genuine mushroom compost is completely sterile, so unlike most compost it won’t add weed seeds to your garden. It is considered non-burning when you incorporate it into the soil, mix it with other soils, or top-dress existing plants that already have an established root system. It is much too rich to plant into it directly, but mixed with other ingredients it is a magic booster for flowers, vegetables and even lawns.

When preparing new beds, apply a 3-inch layer of mushroom compost on the existing soil, till it in 5-6 inches deep, and then plant your plants and water thoroughly. Mulch existing beds with a 2-inch layer and water regularly. The strong organic odor is a sign that the mushroom compost is full of nourishment, and will rapidly disappear.

There aren’t many things you can do as effective, easy and cheap as adding mushroom compost to your growing soil. If you are filling planters or raised beds, you can blend the mushroom compost with other ingredients such as pulverized topsoil, peat moss or bagged potting mix. Whatever your mixture, it should be fluffy enough to drain well and stay loose. If you take care not to pack it down, plant roots will rapidly fill it and you’ll have the best garden you’ve ever had.

We no longer own a retail outlet (GoodSeed Farm retail garden center is permanently closed), so we aren’t a source for mushroom compost. Well-stocked garden centers carry mushroom compost in bags, and larger ones may offer bulk as well. Our local source for bulk mushroom compost is Ridgeway Lumber, in the Wheat Ridge Amish community near West Union. Their address is 3735 Wheat Ridge Road West Union Ohio 45693. Phone is 937-544-7566.