Can I use fresh manure gardening?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by TinaNWonderland, Apr 19, 2005.

  1. TinaNWonderland

    TinaNWonderland Well-Known Member

    May 12, 2004
    Western Kentucky
    I'm going to put in a rose garden next week and I'll soon be planting a veggie garden, and since I have plenty of calf and goat poop around here, I was wondering if I can go ahead and use it "fresh from the pasture" or do I need to age it first?

    (I also have chickens, whose poop I'm told is pure gold in the garden :haha: , but I had heard that I need to let it set a few months before putting it on plants since it could burn them. I just cleaned out the coop and all the old mess in under a tree)

    Anyway, so can I just put a cow patty or some goat crunchies in the hole before I plant the roses and other plants? I figure it would be okay, since it isn't the chicken poo, but I would love to hear some expert advice, please! :)

  2. henk

    henk Well-Known Member

    Jun 20, 2003
    The Netherlands, EU
    NO! dont use fresh manure, it will eat your plants.

    You either have to age it or manure in the fall/early winter when the garden is emty.

    BTW for the roses i would use special rose (aged horse) manure, especially when you plan to plant grafted roses.


  3. WanderingOak

    WanderingOak Well-Known Member

    Jul 12, 2004
    New York
    That reminds me of a funny that I read in this month's Contryside. In Romania, horse manure is highly valued for gardens. In small towns that still use horses on a regular basis, the locals would collect road apples for compost. One local actually got into an argument with a housewife after he tried to collect some 'apples' from the road outside her house. She eventually chased him off with a broom, claiming that the 'apples' where hers because they were on the road outside her house. Whenever she saw him after that, she would mutter under her breath "There goes that horese <apple> thief".
  4. Cygnet

    Cygnet Well-Known Member Supporter

    Sep 13, 2004
    Middle of nowhere along the Rim, Arizona
    You can add fresh manure, but you need to add nitrogen at the same time. As manure breaks down, it locks up nitrogen temporarily before releasing it.

    I've had fairly good luck with horse manure by applying it as a top dressing and then using a weak solution of a water soluable fertilizer (miracle grow or an off brand) with every watering. Not organic, but fairly harmless if yu make sure you have no runoff. (WHich is not a problem in my neck of the woods.)

  5. mpillow

    mpillow Well-Known Member Supporter

    Jan 24, 2003
    I use both fresh and aged goat poop barn litter on my gardens...I usually top dress with fresh litter to keep down weeds then it gets tilled under in the fall. I had very good garden on newly tilled soil last year by doing this.
  6. Mid Tn Mama

    Mid Tn Mama Well-Known Member Supporter

    May 11, 2002
    Goat and rabbit poop will go directly on the garden without burning plants. I use a deep composting method in my coop so the compost is a little aged before I put it in the garden. I usually dump it on the ground in the fall, or sprinkle around plants in the spring. Beans don't like extra nitrogen. As for cow patties, I'd let that age a bit, but I do put unaged stuff on top of the soil around my shrubs/trees if handy.
  7. willow_girl

    willow_girl Very Dairy

    Dec 7, 2002
    Dysfunction Junction
    Any "pellet" or "berry" shaped manure (goat, sheep, llama) can be applied directly without aging or composting.

    I have scraped the barns and tilled in fresh manure (mixed with dirt and bedding) without any problems.

    Dry, crumbly cow patties also can be used to side-dress rows or make manure tea for fertilizing potted plants.

    I've never heard of adding nitrogen to manure to break it down ... manure itself is high in nitrogen, no?! I have heard that if you're composting mostly "browns" -- leaves, sawdust, woodchips -- it is necessary to add nitrogen (organically, in the form of manure or "greens" -- for instance, grass clippings) in order to break down the "browns," as nitrogen is used up in the process.

    WanderingOak, I admire the thrift of any culture that would argue over horse turds! :D