bone meal in compost

scotty66(8 Hutto TX)April 9, 2012

I bought a bag of organic bone meal (see picture) and sprinkled small amounts of it throughout my vegetable garden. I also have two miniature pinschers, and they went berserk. I have a green "plastic mesh" fence around my garden that has been successful to keep the dogs from eating my tomatoes... but this bone meal had them trying to climb the fence and dig under.

Twice I caught them in the garden eating dirt/bone meal and had to put landscape timbers along the bottom edge where they had found room to crawl under.

now that I think about it: dogs... bones.... bone meal. I see the attraction.

I don't want to use this stuff anymore, my question is, can I bury the bone meal in my compost pile without the dogs smelling it. My compost pile is about 4x4x4 and fairly new. My mix hasn't been "optimal" because it I don't get steam... It's mostly grass and oak leaves (lot's of oak leaves). The center of the compost is warm/hot, but it still breaks down given enough time.

Here is a link that might be useful: website for bone meal

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
gardenfanatic(MO zone5b)

My dog has never given a rat's you know what about bone meal, until I got the kind you have. She dug up every plant I planted with it. I looked at the label, and it's ground up pig bones. That's why it's so attractive to them - they think it's a pork roast.

If the compost pile is in the backyard, they might still be able to smell it.

Now I only use my "pork roast" bone meal in the front yard, where my dog doesn't have access. If that's an option for you, maybe you could do that.


    Bookmark   April 9, 2012 at 8:12PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

The lack of steam during digestion does not mean your compost is not "optimal", just that it is not hot enough to produce some steam. Compost happens, as indicated by the fact that yours is warm to hot and does "break down", get digestged, in time.
People have added bone meal, and rock dusts, to their compost piles for years, but most studies I've seen indicate there is not that much benefit. Spreading bone meal in the garden can be more problematic then beneficial, as you discovered, unless the meal is buried quite deep.
Given the samll benefit from bone meal I'm not sure I wouild spend the money for the stuff today.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 6:24AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
scotty66(8 Hutto TX)

I had read and seen some good info regarding bone meal (gardenweb forums and youtube videos)... but I never imagined the dogs reacting this way. It is way too much of a pain to deal with.

Maybe it is just this one particular brand as "gardenfanatic" said, but I think I am scarred for life against this product.

We are due to to have some light rain all weekend, I think I will scatter it across my front yard and hope the rain soaks it into the ground. either that or I'm going to have every; cat, dog, raccoon, skunk and coyote in the county in my yard :)

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 5:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Well scotty, that's a mess! Gosh. I can just hear em going "Pork roooooast!"

Dogs can smell a flea fart at 10,000 meters, so it's anyone's guess whether they would pick up the scent in the compost. I would suggest adding a SMALL amount every few days (maybe when you add new materials and stirring it in. Eventually you'll get rid of the bag. It certainly won't hurt the compost any.

Or, you could stash it away and forget it until winter when the dogs aren't outside much?

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 6:04PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo



Here is a link that might be useful: Maple bacon dog

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 6:32PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I use bone meal at the bases of rose bushes for a good flush of roses.

In the garden I dig large 1' deep holes where I am starting my plants to look for cutworms and to deposit a screened mixture of agricultural grade limestone dust, bone meal, Epsom salt, compost, peat moss, & some of the dirt I originally dug up. It is all mixed together really well and planted.

I bottle my urine and use it for nitrogen boosts at the beginning of the year... This keeps out a lot of cats and it is inexpensive & plentiful. (I also use it to compost leaves.) I'm not sure if it would keep dogs from digging up the garden.

However, there is an additive that will prevent your dogs from digging up the soil with bone meal or not... It's called Cayenne Pepper powder, and unless your dogs are Cajun from New Iberia, Louisiana, they will avoid this powder after one sniff.

Sometimes, I put bone meal in my compost to help raise the temperature to make it compost more efficiently.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2013 at 8:11PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
How can I get my soil to hold water longer?
I live in Augusta and I just bought a bunch of Bricko's...
Berm and Top Soil/Tilling?
I plan on creating a low berm - about 6 inches tall...
Bob Sislow
Moldy fruit and breads okay for compost bin?
Are these okay to add to the bin? Won't the mold spread...
Seeking help/tips for a raised bed that's out of control with weeds...
Hi there, I have a raised bed garden. 3 years ago,...
Moving to a new home with a blank canvas and landscape...
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™