It's summertime! This means family activities, trips to the lake and cookouts...but it also means a lot of time spent outside working on the lawn and garden. Beyond just planting your favorite vegetables and flowers in the spring, there is so much more you can do to improve the quality of your soil and the health and beauty of your plants. What can you do mid-summer to keep your lawn and garden looking their best? Add compost!
Depending on what you are growing and the condition of your existing soil, there are a couple different types of compost available. For high value or heavy feeding plants like you'd grow in a vegetable garden, it's best to use a compost that's rich in organic matter and biology, while also including added minerals and nutrients. This allows you to add less fertility and double your inputs in one simple step! Purple Cow Organics Activated Compost will infuse trace minerals, nutrients, and microbes into your soil, which will ensure that all the plants you grow will be as happy and healthy as possible.
If your outdoor goal is to have the healthiest lawn in the neighborhood or the biggest brightest flowers in your garden bed, you'll want a plant-based compost, like Purple Cow Organics Classic Compost, to enhance the biological ecosystems in your existing soil. This means watering less often, stronger root systems, larger plants and brighter colors as well as an increased ability to uptake nutrients and minerals. You can add all the fertilizers in the world but if your soil doesn't have biology, your plants will not be able to make use of those inputs.
One of our most frequently asked questions is, "What is the difference between Classic and Activated Compost?" Purple Cow Organics recycles yard materials like leaves, sticks, branches and brush. We put these materials through a grinder to enable faster decomposition, then create windrows that are frequently turned throughout the composting process. The material is heated to such high temperatures during this process that any harmful chemicals like pesticides or pathogens that may have been on the original materials, are essentially "cooked out." The resulting product is a rich dark brown, almost black material that smells like a forest or freshly cut grass. This soil-like product is regularly tested for quality assurance and is certified for organic use by the Organic Materials Review Institute. This is our Classic Compost. It's the "special sauce" that gets added to all of our growing mixes. It's also what we use as a base to create Activated Compost.
A blend of rock minerals, sea minerals, and worm castings, known as the PCO Mineral Complex, are added to Classic Compost then put through a secondary activation phase. This fuses together the added ingredients and the compost, while further breaking down the material into an even finer soil amendment that now also includes fertility. The resulting product is Activated Compost. It is the flag ship product of Purple Cow Organics and is our oldest and most beloved product, around which we have built our business.
Now that you know which type of compost is best for your specific project and the difference between the two composts, where can you find them? Let's start with Classic Compost. Classic is a bulk-only product that can be delivered by us in full truckloads of 25 or 35 cubic yards to farms or commercial business locations. If you are a residential home gardener, we will always encourage you to visit one of our bulk resellers. We've got over 20 bulk resellers throughout Wisconsin and northern Illinois that all carry Classic Compost. Most will even deliver it right to your home! You can find your closest bulk reseller under the Gardener tab when you click, "Where to Buy."
A couple select bulk resellers in the Madison and Milwaukee areas, do also sell Activated by the cubic yard, but if that is the product you are after, it's likely better to visit one of the many many independent retailers and garden centers throughout the Midwest and beyond that carry our products. We typically recommend calling ahead if you are after one specific product but almost all of our retailers carry Activated Compost in one cubic foot bags.
If you have any further questions on how to use our compost products or if you are a professional grower or farmer, please feel free to contact us through the Contact tab at the top of the page.