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Where to buy high-quality compost for raised beds?

Posted by theresa111 z9 CA (My Page) on
Wed, Jan 19, 11 at 13:23

I'm in Orange County, CA (Irvine Area) and would like to have some new compost for my raised vegetable beds(I have about 7). In the past I've used bags from Lowes, but haven't been too impressed by the amount of rocks, metal and other debris in with the compost. Is there a place to get high-quality compost in my area? Organic is preferable too. I don't have a truck, so it would have to be delivered to my house. I have plans for my own compost pile, but until then... any ideas would be appreciated!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Where to buy high-quality compost for raised beds?

Don't believe everything you've heard about compost being the zenith of soils for everything----it isn't.
Consult a good source of information about which vegetables you are contemplating growing and then find out what kind of soil it prefers.

Most vegetables prefer a slightly acidic soil pH within the range of 6.0-7.0. If the soil is too acidic or alkaline, certain nutrients become unavailable to the plant and poor growth or death of the plant results.
Giving 'hot' compost, much like amending soil with manures, to some vegetables can be like giving them a death sentence. If we assume that compost has a degree of nitrogen that might not be good for a plant, then we should avoid making the soil so rich.
Often the soil you have is quite nice for growing vegetables and doesn't need a high degree of enrichment.

As far as buying compost, your local full service nursery should be able to help you. Live near a highway that leads to farm country?....Farmers usually will put out at roadside offerings of sheep or cattle manure--well aged--to passing motorists.

RE: Where to buy high-quality compost for raised beds?

People pay for compost??? ;)

RE: Where to buy high-quality compost for raised beds?

We live in the middle of suburbia (southern California): it's all houses and schools and shopping centers. There's no farm down the road (LOL)! Yes, we pay for compost, nothing's FREE here! There are no FARMS anywhere near here! I'm the only person I know of that has a vegetable garden. Most people around here have pools in the backyard, not raised beds! So, I figure someone must know of somewhere I could locate some better soil/compost to put in my raised beds. I mean, it's alot of soil to just buy the bags... and like I said, I'm not that impressed with Lowe's or Home Depot's bagged stuff. And, maybe it's just soil that I need, not compost... our backyard soil had too much clay, so I can't use that... (I've tried, didn't work!)

something to think about

Interesting about the acidic needs of veggies, something I will keep in mind!

RE: Where to buy high-quality compost for raised beds?

  • Posted by pt03 2b Southern Manitob (My Page) on
    Wed, Jan 19, 11 at 18:17

I have no idea if this website works but if you want to try it...


RE: Where to buy high-quality compost for raised beds?

You could check your phone book for local landscape suppliers or bobcat services.

They should either be able to supply you with soil already mixed with manure, or they should be able to direct you to someone who does.

For a fee you could also have it delivered.

Good luck!

RE: Where to buy high-quality compost for raised beds?

Armstrong Garden Centers (in Irvine and throughout Southern California) carries E.B. Stone Organic Planting Compost. It can be found at other nurseries as well. Not cheap but I think it's good quality. Contains Composted Wood Shavings, Redwood Compost, Composted Chicken Manure, Mushroom Compost, Fir Bark, Bat Guano, Kelp Meal and Alfalfa Meal.

RE: Where to buy high-quality compost for raised beds?

Hi Theresa111,
nutsaboutflowers has given you wonderful advice, I would do that (call a landscape supply company) they will be able to direct you to your best and most cost efficient options, too bad you are so far from Lloyd (Manitoba, Canada) he is our Master Composter, hopefully his link will work for you...
As far as Cathyca's advice, If I needed some high tech compost I might try what she mentioned (as least to top off my beds). VERY EXPENSIVE THOUGH , so it would definitely be only if I had fistfuls of money (which I do not), anyway get your compost bins going for next year ...OK ........ let us see some pics , to let us see how you are coming along...

Compost Bins 4-22-2010

Hot Steaming Compost 4-22-2010

Garden 4-22-2010



Here is a link that might be useful: Jon's Wonderful Garden 2010

RE: Where to buy high-quality compost for raised beds?

If you need a quantity, you want to find a bulk soil product rather than bagged - bagged soils will run you at least 3-4 times the price regardless of quality. And you probably do not need all compost - a planting mix or some combo of soil with added organic matter is better than 100% compost for raised beds.

Don't let folks make you feel guilty about buying soil or compost. Not everyone has the luxury of time or space or ingredients or ability (or even community permission) to make their own compost or in the quantities required. And you cannot "make" soil so if you need to fill a bunch of raised beds, importing soil is the only reasonable alternative. Folks in very urban areas do it all the time and it is becoming more and more common in suburban locations, especially those with small lot sizes and crummy native soils.

Check this place out - they are throughout CA and look to have a decent product. They deliver themselves but only on large orders but they also supply various retail outlets. Call and see who might be available close to you. If THEY don't deliver, rent a pickup from uHaul or wherever or borrow a friend' will still come out cheaper than buying umpteen bags. The Premium Planter Mix is what I'd go with............or you can do a part load of that and a part load of the compost. Check the analyses first :-)

Here is a link that might be useful: SoCal bulk soil supplier

RE: Where to buy high-quality compost for raised beds?

Here is one, Oh yeah... thats me....

No I am not trying to solicit on this site.....
This is the video I run on Craigslist for locals.

Here is a link that might be useful: Compost ad for Craigslist video

RE: Where to buy high-quality compost for raised beds?

An ad from Orange Co location on Craigslist has supossedly good quaility compost at $12 a cu yd. Delivery available it says also...

You may have some close and check the quaility.... Everything on C-list is NOT what is represented. Attached link

Here is a link that might be useful: Compost Link for Orange Co compost

RE: Where to buy high-quality compost for raised beds?

I live in Kokomo, IN & I want to purchase 100 sq ft (100) 40# of the best composed soil available for my raised bed garden project.
I checked the big box stores & top soil is going for $1.50 / bag.
Horse manure & peat moss cost a $1.75 / bag.
I had a dump truck load of "good black" top soil deliver last fall & had to send it back because it was 80% clay.

Here are my questions:
1. What mixture of the above soil, manure & peat moss is the best for the garden?
2. Where can I purchase composed soil be delived to my home via truck?


RE: Where to buy high-quality compost for raised beds?

You could check this place out

Here is a link that might be useful: Serrano Creek Soils

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