Best Supplier Of Compost 2021

Discussion in 'Compost, Fertilisers & Recycling' started by shiney, Jan 11, 2021.

  1. rustyroots

    rustyroots Total Gardener

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    I have used Erin Excel multi purpose this year. It is what the new nursery local to me were selling so thought I would try it. I have been really pleased with it. Good texture and not a lot of debris in when sieved.

    Rusty
     
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    • JWK

      JWK Gardener Staff Member

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      @pete interesting experiment thanks.

      Which brand?
       
    • pete

      pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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      Peat free was Westland.
       
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      • JWK

        JWK Gardener Staff Member

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        I had one bag of that to test this spring alongside Wickes and Verve "full fat peat based" composts. But I forgot to do a test and used it all up without labelling which plants I used it for! To be honest I can't see any significant differences between any of the composts I have bought this year.

        Wickes MPC has been Ok but they have reduced the bag size to 50l now so it is less of a bargain. Also it isn't as compressed as in previous years so no need to sieve out or try and break up the lumps, this does mean the volume is even less considering in previous years the volume increased once you gave the bag a good shake and broke up the lumps.
         
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        • pete

          pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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          At the end of summer last year as a quick trial I put a few seeds of rocket in one pot of peat based and one of the the Westland peat free.
          The pf one grew slower initially but eventually it grew bigger and greener.
           
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          • gks

            gks Gardener

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            Do you know who the manufacturer is that makes the Coolings own label? Own label was always a good sign that the compost was good, it's their preferred choice when growing.
             
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            • pete

              pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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              I can't see anything on the bag other than the adress of the main Coolings garden centre in Sevenoaks.
               
            • gks

              gks Gardener

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              It must be a decent size set up to have your own label. It was very popular 30 years ago for GC to have their own label, we used to do it for numerous independent GC. The packaging companies are huge now and they have a minimum order, which can be into the tens of thousands, where as in the past you could get them to run off a couple of thousand of printed bags.

              Only customer who we still supply in your neck of the woods is, Roger Platts garden design, which we supply an organic soil conditioner.
               
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              • HarryS

                HarryS Eternally Optimistic Gardener

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                Is the peat free testing due to the imminent demise of peat rich compost in the near future?
                 
              • gks

                gks Gardener

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                Peat based compost was to be phased out to the retail sector by the end of 2015, trials proved there was not enough quality alternatives and it was to be delayed to 2020. We are now in 2021 and the ban has not been imposed, it was all good and well when they released the white document to the manufacturers in 2011 with the time scale, what the government did not tell us was they were going to start subsidising energy companies to burn bio mass and pass legislation to burn cattle litter. Bark fines and wood chip was one alternative manufacturers had been using anyways since the early 1990's so we already had some expertise, but when you start burning bio mass in large volumes then the volumes of bark to the horticultural sector is not there anymore.

                In April 2011 when the government released the time scale for phasing out peat, the environmentalists were not happy with the timescale and said more needed to be done. They actually wanted a levy of 4p per litre to be introduced. So basically a 100 litre bale of peat based compost would have went up £4.80 when you add the vat.
                 
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                • pete

                  pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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                  I'm not sure how many branches this particular GC has, but they took over a smallish nursery not far from me called The Potted Garden, they were always a good place for plants, even sold more unusual hardy and some borderline shrubs and trees, but not in massive quantities.

                  They still have carried on much the same but Coolings have made it a bit more commercial, and expensive ;), as they do.
                   
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                  • pete

                    pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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                    Centres Archive - Coolings Garden Centre

                    I notice they state that most of the bedding plants are from local growers.
                    I presume that is why they have those massive double trailer artics in there from Netherlands.:biggrin:
                     
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                    • JWK

                      JWK Gardener Staff Member

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                      The Netherlands is local to Kent as the crow flies ;)
                       
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                      • pete

                        pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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                        You mean Seagull.;)
                         
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                        • gks

                          gks Gardener

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                          When my dad started making compost to grow plants in 1969 it was not long before someone asked him to make compost for them and that's when it all started. He purchased himself a 500 litre ribbon mixer and he still uses it to this day.

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