Old 09-18-05, 05:46 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: USA
Posts: 118

What is the major differences between compost,manure and humas. Every
garden book I read always says to add one or the other. What is best to
add to your soil and when? Thank you in addvance.
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Old 09-18-05, 01:34 PM
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Taylors, SC
Posts: 9,483
Compost is a mixture of plant materials that have composted, that is, broken down through heat and other microbial activity. Properly composted material will provide a general benefit for soil through adding organic fiber to open the soil, nutrients for the plants, and attract worms to some extent. This enables the soil to hold moisture better than otherwise, the roots of plants grow easier through the more friable soil, and oxygen permeates the soil easier for the plants. It can be added at most any time. In large quantities, it is tilled into the soil for seed beds. Adding it to existing yards is called top dressing.

Manure is generally the fecal waste of grazing animals such as horses, cows, and sheep. Uncomposted, it contains noxious weed seeds and reeks. Consequently, manure is rarely added to the soil. Composting solves these problems resulting in composted manure. Composted manure lacks the volume of organic material typical of composted plants and such. It is used more to feed plants as a side dressing.

Humus, as meant by most, is just black, rich soil. Technically, it is a chemical condition and state of soil; but nobody uses the term casually for this purpose. Many add soil as needed by type.

There are many ways to use these products. Hope this helps.

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