Q.Ratios Of Soil
So, I am wanting to do a raised garden bed this year. The dimensions of the bed are 6ft. x 8ft x 33.5 inches (I imagine I might only go to 28 inches to leave some room at the top). Which comes to a little over 4 cubic yards of soil that is needed. I am trying to figure out the best soil to buy. I’ve read that a good ratio is 1/4 garden soil, 1/4 compost material, 1/4 peat moss, and 1/4 vermiculite or perlite. A couple of questions. 1. Should I do 1/8 vermiculite and 1/8 perlite? 2. I read that perlite expands up to 20 times its size, so would I need an entire cubic yard of perlite, or will it expand and I really can get less? 3. If my options are a cubic yard of leaf compost or a cubic yard of mushroom compost, which would be more preferable (trying to buy in bull to save money) 4. Any other suggestions you may have?
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Other than most standard raised bed mixes, I only have two small preference differences.
1. I prefer vermiculite over Perlite, but Perlite is much cheaper in bulk. Either will work just fine.
2. Mushroom compost is a good mix that skips a step in composting. It is already in a form that plants can use, and if there are any surviving spores or mycelium they can help clean and break down the soil further. I produce my own mushroom compost and use it as often as I need to. It is a superb amendment.
Make sure to mix well, and it is best to let it sit for a few weeks before planting. If you can't wait, it will be fine. It is just best to let the mixed soil sit for a bit.
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