The Accidental Smallholder Forum

Growing => Vegetables => Topic started by: tobytoby on July 28, 2011, 11:32:12 am

Title: well rotted horse manure options?
Post by: tobytoby on July 28, 2011, 11:32:12 am
I have access to copious amounts manure but 2 different types, where the horses have been bedded on straw or wood shavings. Would either be good to dig in and or be used in a poly tunnel? Any thoughts or advice - thanks.
Title: Re: well rotted horse manure options?
Post by: lachlanandmarcus on July 28, 2011, 12:27:38 pm
wood shavings take a long time to fully rot down and in the interim they can actually take nutrients out rather than put them in, I would be keener on the straw option if the pile is less than 1 year rotted or is fresh. But if both are black and rotted for 2 years plus (ie you cant see any individual shavings any more) then they would be similar and both would be suitable.

Im lucky as we have our own horses and they are on hemp and wood pellets which combination rots down mega quick and produces fab results!
Title: Re: well rotted horse manure options?
Post by: Sylvia on July 28, 2011, 01:33:25 pm
Black gold!! ;D
Title: Re: well rotted horse manure options?
Post by: tobytoby on July 28, 2011, 02:01:46 pm
Lauchlandandmarcus - How are wood pellets different from shavings, i know nothing about horses?
Title: Re: well rotted horse manure options?
Post by: lachlanandmarcus on July 28, 2011, 05:11:10 pm
They are exactly the same material ie wood fibre BUT the wood pellets are simple compressed sawdust which is already in such small size particles that it rots down much quicker. The shavings being much larger and much more fibrous have a lot more work to do to turn themselves into black gold, and getting that reaction going in those circumstances means initially they can suck goodness and nutrients in rather than giving it out. Also in our case the hemp is mixed in with the wood pellets and the hemp is reknowned for rotting down mega quick so it helps to get the process going too.

We use the hemp/pellets mix as unlike shavings it doesnt stick to rugs, horses and fleece jackets, and doesnt blow everywhere and the horses love it, it's like a lovely forest floor! And the mucky bits stay where they are and dont get dragged round the stable. Also shavings bales often take ages to fluff out as they can be quite compressed, whereas pellets and hemp both just pour out :-)))) yes I am a bit lazy!
Title: Re: well rotted horse manure options?
Post by: ellied on July 29, 2011, 07:55:43 am
Take the straw based stuff over shavings every time..

And if you want more, 6 months-3yo in separated heaps in a paddock in Fife to load yourself, let me know ;D
Title: Re: well rotted horse manure options?
Post by: tobytoby on July 29, 2011, 11:26:00 am
Thanks all, now i know.

Ellied - Fife to Dalry not that far, maybe if i am passing?? Thanks
Title: Re: well rotted horse manure options?
Post by: Plantoid on August 27, 2011, 12:29:28 am
 Apparently fresh or denatured wood chips or shavings  take approx 7 years to stop robbing the soil of nitrogen even if in stable waste.

If you can get the straw based waste ..... make a big heap about 2 mtr by 2 mtr by 1.5 mtr and water it well with a hose for an hour then cover it in a dark poly cover and weight the sides down . After three weeks remove the cover and move and rebuild the heap .
It will have shrunk and changed colour , repeat the watering and covering twice more and you will have a reasonable  composted manure but it will still contain some hard to get rid of perennial  weeds .

Bunging in a bucket of hydrated lime during the second and subsequent turning/heap rebuilds will make for heat in the heap  and faster decomposition as well as attacking residual seeds .