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To manure or not to manure


Fri, Jun 15th, 2001
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Virginia CooperMonday, June 18, 2001

Whether compost or manure, fresh or aged, you can help your garden grow by adding organic matter to your soil. If you garden on a small scale like I do, without the aid of tractors or plow horses, it can seem like a huge task. But try to think of your garden as a series of small spaces and add a little at a time. Over time you will see the difference. Composting is easy. As you weed throw all your weeds, (kitchen scraps, too) into a pile. When the pile is a year old, remove the top layer of undigested stuff and the good brown stuff underneath is ready to use. If you have manure, use it! Older is better. But if all you have is fresh manure, this week's article is for you.

To manure or not to manure

The basis for a healthy garden is the soil. A soil rich in humus is a soil full of organic matter. Depleted soil will only grow depleted plants. In our area the soil tends to be heavy with clay. To tell if you have enough organic matter in a clay soil, take a handful of moist, not wet, soil and give it a squeeze. If it crumbles apart easily it has a good amount of organic material. (A sandy soil will break apart, but if rich in organic material it will hold together.)

How does your soil hold up under the squeeze test? Adding organic material to your garden is the best way to have healthy plants. Compost is great if you have a pile going and can add shovelfuls from a bucket or wheelbarrow as you plant. But in farm country one thing we all have around is manure.

Fresh manure contains high amounts of ammonium or soluble nitrogen which gives you a higher availability of nitrogen as compared to well composted or rotted manure. Salts in fresh manure also tend to be very high, especially turkey or chicken manure. The salts in the manure can kill garden plants if large quantities are used.

Fresh manure should be worked into the soil to a depth of 6 to 8 inches. Do this several weeks before planting. Adding too much manure every year is not a good thing as the nutrients are released over a period of time and nutrient toxicity could occur. You can have too much of a good thing. Signs of nutrient toxicity could be anything from yellowing of leaves, redness of leaves, abnormal growth, stunted growth, wilting or death of plants.

After adding fresh manure to your garden always water the area to a depth of 1 to 2 inches. Use a straight sided bucket as a measure for water when usin .....
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Fillmore County Pork Producers
Hoffman Stables

Stuck in the Mud

Fri, Jun 15th, 2001
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Monday, June 18, 2001

This has been one of the wettest springs ever. Most of the rain didnít seem to fall heavily, just steadily. Farmers have gotten only a brief period of fair weather to get their crops planted. Most of the acres are planted ..... 
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The Death Penalty, with Chinese Characteristics

Fri, Jun 15th, 2001
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Monday, May 28, 2001

The European Parliament, considers capital punishment to be both barbaric and inhumane, regardless of the means by which the death penalty is carried out. They routinely mention the United States in the same breath as Chin ..... 
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Fri, Jun 15th, 2001
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Fri, Jun 15th, 2001
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Fri, Jun 15th, 2001
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Fri, Jun 15th, 2001
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Submit a Letter to the Editor here

Fri, Jun 15th, 2001
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To the Editor,
Monday, June 18, 2001

The City of Lanesboro is concerned about the odors from the Ethanol Plant! Why donít they do something about their own problems first?

The whole town is filled full of smoke from campfires ..... 
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Vernon H. Vigeland

Fri, Jun 15th, 2001
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Vernon H. Vigeland, 77, of LaCrosse, Wis., formerly of Mabel, Minn. died March 12, 2001 at the Green Lea Manor Nursing Home in Mabel where he had resided for only a week.

Vernon was born September 5, 1923 in Preble Township, Fillmore County, M ..... 
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