I have a friend who keeps chickens and I was thinking of asking her for some chicken manure. I'll have to investigate how long it needs to age for safe and effective planting. I don't think I want to use cow or horse manure because of the weed seed problems that go along with it. I did find an organic dairy in Queen Creek that will give you all the manure you want if you come and get it. They'll even load it in your pickup for you. It's not aged, although if you want to wander around and find some that is older, they are glad to let you do that. We purchased some raw mild from them and it was delicious! I do need to check our local coffee shops. We save our own, but more is better and free is best!
That sounds great. I'm going to see if I can get some chicken manure from my friend.
The other thing is, I wouldn't use horse or cow manure unless it was organically fed. That GMO/Roundup resistant grain going through the digestive tract comes out even more toxic than it is when it gets eaten. The more I learn about that stuff the scarier it gets! If you're interested in learning more about GMOs, I have some links from scientists (as opposed to scare mongers) that will make your hair stand on end.
I say all that then admit that I'm going to use Roundup to kill my grass. Sigh.
Thanks, Bryan, but we really do want to get rid of the bermuda. I don't want to live with it and have to continually battle it.
Okay, Bryan. I've been thinking about this. In your opinion, if we mulch aggressively (multiple layers of newspaper topped by 6" of mulch), do you think that we can really kill the bermuda without chemicals? I don't want to put Roundup into the soil but I also don't want to battle the bermuda either. There really isn't going to be a place in our yard for grass so it all has to go - one way or another. The yard is slightly larger than the average back yard but nowhere near 1/4 acre. We're going to have to plan very carefully to get what we want out of the space that we have.
I've put together a yard plan that I think will give us the maximum amount of organic fruit/citrus/vegetables using permaculture principals to stack functions and create micro-climates. We plan to compost and mulch and water as wisely as we can. I'm plagued with a bad back which is why I'm concerned about having to get out and pull grass all the time.
Given all of this, do you really think we can get rid of the grass without chemicals? If so, I really would like appreciate the chance to see your place and talk to you. Thanks for offering!
There's someone on our Laveen and other South Phoenix Gardeners FB page that has organic horse manure if you'd like the info, let me know. Not sure if they're near you. If you're in the valley it might be worth the drive. Especially if you're gardening a larger area.
Our yard is larger than the average small yard but not huge by any means. We live out in Maricopa and have friends with chickens so I'm hoping that they will share some of their chicken manure. I also have my eye on a couple of other mulch sources. I'm hoping that some of them will work out. It's always better to use stuff that would otherwise go to the landfill than have to pay for it.
For anyone who lives out that way, there is an organic dairy in Queen Creek that will load your pickup with free (fresh) manure if you want it.
If you bring your own bags, you can load up your own organic compost/soil mix from the soil place across from the Recylcing place where they sell old recycling containers to be used as compost bins. I have the information in my phone with specific streets and names, as well as a place that has straw and chickens LOL but my phone died and is charging in the other room. Will look it up for you tomorrow if no one else gets back to you with more details before then ;)
Please do post the info! Free organic anything is difficult to find!