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sprouts while cooking soil

Discussion in 'Organic Growing' started by googleuser, Apr 19, 2013.

  1. Hey GC, I came to mix some of LD mix and its been sitting for a week now and im seeing sprouts and a lot of them. I know it will cook off but is this normal to be having a bunch of bean sprouts?:confused:
  2. Sometimes the organic brown rice i add to my soil mix will produce a few sprouts. But u just take a shovel and chop that shit up then mix real well. I mix with my hands and rip up the sprout roots with my fingers.
    As for the sprouts you have in your soil. I wouldn't worry about it. If its LD's soil mixture Im sure it will do great. That guy has dropped some serious knowledge here at Grasscity.
  3. What did you use for aeration, rice hulls? Sometimes they'll have viable seed grains in them.

    At any rate, it's a good sign of fertility. :D
  4. Because I feed my worms lots of cantaloupe and watermelon, I always end up with sprouts in my soil once the vermicompost is added in. I also end up with sprouts in my cups and pots throughout the grow. I just pluck them out and chuck them or I put them in their own cups to start them for the outdoor garden. I can be a pretty convenient way to germinate seeds for my raised bed. It validates the fertility of your soil/compost/vermicompost sources. You can pick em out if they get out of hand.
  5. Thanks for the quick response city of GC. I cant thank everyone here enough.. I was wondering though how hot is your soil suppose to get? Mine is staying room temp pretty much consistantly so I was wondering if im really cooking anything.
  6. Cooking soils can easily reach over 100 degrees. You need to mix your soil every 3-4 days. This will help keep the temperature down. Mine will get warm to the touch. Does this mean it is cooking better? In my opinion. No. Your micro herd may process nutrients and increase their numbers more efficiently at 80 degrees rather than 60 degrees. But there is an ideal temperature range. Maybe someone with a little more knowledge than myself will chime in here. Microbeman? Chunk?
  7. I always get loads of buckwheat growing in my soil - always. I just leave 'em be unless they get too big.


  8. Depends on the species doesn't it? Some "beneficial bacteria" thrive at 100+F and are in stasis at 80F. Some bacteria die at 80F. Some bacteria thrive in sub-50's temperature and "wake up". So, I kinda sorta guess it depends on which family of "beneficials" one is discussing eh?

    This whole "cooking the soil" business... who comes up with this madness LOL!?!?!? Danny Danko!? Growing marihuana shouldn't be this mind boggling and here's the news flash - it isn't mind boggling. "WE" (the indoor gardener) just seem to make it more complicated than it needs to be.

    Does anyone have any published academic research that can attest to this practice of "cooking the soil"? Please, no compost postings eh? This isn't about composting, it's about "cooking", i.e. the cycles. Hmmmm. And what is the end result one looks for when "the cook" is done? loss of nitrogen, more soluble phosphorous, readily available potassium, Ca:Mg ratios on par? What?

    If one wants to "cook" something then cook with canna but you need to GROW some product first and that takes mixing all the ingredients together and planting a dadgum seedling or clone in the result so it can grow.

    Dudes.............. :)
  9. Does anyone have any published academic research that can attest to this practice of "cooking the soil"? Please, no compost postings eh? This isn't about composting, it's about "cooking", i.e. the cycles. Hmmmm. And what is the end result one looks for when "the cook" is done? loss of nitrogen, more soluble phosphorous, readily available potassium, Ca:Mg ratios on par? What?

    Possum, are you saying that we should be planting immediately after mixing a new batch of soil?

  10. I think so jerrymate. Unless one is adding an ammonia or urea based source of N (specifically) the danger of "nute burn" is extremely low if not non-existant. The nitrification cycle in particular results in one of either NH4 or NO3. As you know both of these forms of nitrogen are subject to volitization which results in nitrogen loss, disappearing into the atmosphere from our soil lines. And, both of these forms of N are the primary forms of N that are plant usable. Short of this one issue, i.e. "nute burn", I can't think of any other good reason for mixing up soil and nutrients and then letting them sit for weeks before using them. Just doesn't pass the "Ain't Right Test". Just my opine. BTDT and have the pictures.

    So okay, I'm guilty as I allude to. I've practiced "the cook" and quite frankly I've only seen improvement in my plants overall health and growth when I mix everything together and then plant without "cooking" anything. IDK I may have coined the term "cooking the soil" a few years ago. Perhaps not. At least that's what I used to call it when I did it and no one then knew WTH I was talking about. Kinda sorta like right now... :smoke:

    There's probably a thread on this highly sought after skill set, "How Do I Cook My Soil", so I apologize for jacking this thread. I was bored. Now I have to go get busy. Road trip coming up :)


    And P.S. I agree wholeheartedly that seeing sprouts in your container is nothing but a good sign for great soil health. Little seedlings won't grow where it's not habitable.
  11. Well, there's probably a good chance that we mix soils differently. I've tried your way and it didn't work for me. I (and I hate the word "cook") cycle my soil for two reasons that I personally feel are quite important -

    1. To allow these amendments to break down at least somewhat into usable plant food - As far as I'm concerned I have the potential to heat up the soil mix with things like alfalfa, so why not let things settle in.

    2. To allow my compost/vermicompost and crab/lobster to help and buffer/stabilize this new soils pH.

    Cya - have a good road trip.

  12. #12 GiMiK, Apr 20, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 20, 2013
    Would this be along the lines of what you're asking about? :D

    "Over the past decade a new paradigm of the N cycle has developed in which the supply of C- and N- containing monomers to microbial populations and the interaction between microbial populations and their predators has become central to the soil N cycle (Fig. 1a; Schimel and Bennett 2004). The key mechanism through which microbes access substrate is through the production of exo-enzymes that brings particulate organic matter (POM) into solution (DOM containing dissolved organic C and N, DOM-C, DOM-N), which serves as the source for microbial uptake of nutrients. The supply of labile DOM to the microbes is the rate-limiting step in N mineralization (Schimel and Bennett 2004). Central to N cycling is the process of gross N mineralization and immobilization turnover (N MIT) and net N mineralization is the balance of these two fluxes.

    Chapin et al. (2002) provide an example where the C:N ratios of microbes are in the order of 10:1 and the microbes assimilate 40% and respire 60%of C. When C:N ratios of microbial food sources are below a threshold (less than’25:1), there is excess N for the available C and this N is excreted as NH4(Fig. 2). Hence N is mineralized. When substrate exceeds the threshold,the microbes become increasingly N limited and N is retained in the microbial biomass or extracted from the inorganic pool, causing N immobilization (Fig. 2). Fig. 2 shows that in situations where there is a pool of available inorganic N, an increase in DOM-C may lead to greater CO2 production by the microbes, greater gross N immobilization, and possibly increased microbial biomass."


    I take it the limiting factor in N mineralization would be the time it takes to create said DOM?

    Perhaps that's why it's beneficial to wait, though maybe I'm missing something. :confused:

    At least it's discussion worthy.

  13. I too think that using the term "cycling" rather than cooking cuts down on alot of confusion. I used to think that everyone here was actually putting their soil in an oven and cooking it in order to sterilize it like I have heard of people doing in other areas outside organics....then MIW set me straight and explained the lingo :D.

    Ive wondered about planting directly into soil that has yet to be cycled without any bad effect. The sprouts that I mentioned seeing in my soil/vermicompost dont seem to have any burns or anything and my soil never gets "hot" during the time that I leave it to cycle. I actually started wondering about this after I once threw an unwanted clone into a wheel barrel containing soil that I had just made. After a week or so, I noticed that the clone instead of dying, had actually rooted in the soil and began to try to stand up:confused:. The leaves looked pretty depleted so I never gave it alot of thought other than to take pics of it and post crediting the "toughness" of the little clone.

    Ive been following some tutelage from Faye. She has been putting her girls into soil that is a mix of fresh and recylced soil with no "cycle" time and her plants lok great. Theres always something to learn here!:)

    Have a safe trip Poss!

  14. Thanks man!

    Faye has some good stuff going on over at her crib and plenty to learn about there fo sho.

    I'm hoping the learning here goes like this: With plant nutrients and fertilizers the 'lable is the law'. If the lable indicates a certain percentage of available N is water soluble there is an almost 100% certainty the fertilizer will contain a form of urea or manure. When urea comes into contact with water it immediately converts to ammonium. Over the span of a couple of days the conversion releases ammonia gas. This is what causes the nitrogen "nute burn" seen with certain fertilizers be they "organic" or not - excessive ammonia gas. Just read the lable to make an informed decision.

    My comments about cycling the soil were very specific; there is no need to cycle the soil UNLESS one is using a nitrogen source containing urea or ammonium, aka "water soluble N". If people are still using blood meal they too should be concerned about rapid solubilzation of nitrogen to ammonium. Quite frankly, IMO, anyone that is using animal blood for fertilizer isn't thinking right. Anyway....

    If one is using plant based nitrogen sources or other NON-water soluble nitrogen sources then there is absolutely no best practice that says you have to let your soil cycle before using it. In fact, the whole point in discussing this within the context of the nitrogen cycle is that once the cycle starts the nitrogen becomes available in solution (the cycle doesn't function in dry conditions) and it is either "use it or lose it" because the nitrogen will ultimately become one form of or all of; immoblilized, converted to ammonia gas, or leach through the cycling/cooking soil bin. The plant should be growing while the nitrogen cycle is in process and not after the process has been started and well on its way 10 days or more. Otherwise nitrogen loss occurs and it defeats the purpose of trying to keep a healthy, nitrogen and carbon starving microherd full and happy. The microherd requires both carbon and nitrogen to feed on. The plant needs carbon and nitrogen to live on. The plant roots and the bacteria form the relationship and on and on it goes.

    The whole point is: urea or ammonium or water soluble nitrogen leads to plant burning and the use of any of these sources of nitrogen should be considered in the soil-cycling conundrum. If using other nitrogen sources - plant or other non-animal based - your money is better spent and the plants will be safe and happy if you just mix it together and plant the plant in it.

    Not exactly my points above but still yet another interesting observation about the nitrogen cycle only this time focusing on the C:N ratio and the impact to nitrogen availability. Isn't it interesting that the 10:1 ratio of C:N is ideal for nitrogen mobilization and availability. Contrast this with what most academic studies indicate as an ideal C:N ratio for composting which is ~30:1. However when compost is finished and the quality is where it should be the C:N ratio is 10:1 <cite>

    A worthy discussion but I sure did jack up dudes thread LOL.

    jerrymate, I don't mean to indicate there is zero value in soil cycling. But I do see a lot of posters early in their organic journey with their first few grows waiting patiently marking days off the calendar while their soil "cooks" for some made-up time frame before they can use their soil and get growing. I think we can help these folks avoid that wait and set some things straight for them. That's the spirit in which I intend the info sharing.
  15. Possum, what about allowing pH to stabilize? I know for a fact that I've hurt some plants before by having pH fluctuations right out of the gate.

    There is absolutely no doubt that you are right/correct about the fertilizer type making ALL the difference in the world. If one was to use high quality vermicompost, kelp, comfrey and maybe a couple of other "gentle" plant based (fertilizer certainly isn't the right word here) - hmmmm - amendments, then there probably is no need to let a soil sit, but with other (here's another crappy word for this) "hotter" amendments such as, like you said, blood meal, or a mess of alfalfa then I would be nervous about immediate planting.

    I'm sure that it all comes down to the ingredients used in the mix. I simply plan ahead - I've always got a massive tote mixed and ready to go - sometimes it might be a couple of weeks before I need it; sometimes it might be 3 months -

    Interesting discussion. My homemade pizza is done so I gotta go! Lol

  16. Glad this being discussed.

    Subbed until someone starts a new thread. Definitely should, as to get more mouths at the round table.
  17. Makes perfect sense.. I just didnt think anything could survive while soil was cooking/compost/cycling. And it was worrying me because my soil temp stays 70s consistantly with no warmth whatsoever, but it was all plant based amendments no blood so im guessing its normal.
  18. I used to wonder if I was even mixed and cycling my soil correctly because I never got the heat nor the strong smells that are said to be associated. From time to time though, I get mycelium growth but even that is only sometimes. It works though! :D

    I think that the really good question though (as Jerry brought up) is how long it takes for ph to stabalize so as not to be detrimental if one wanted to plant into it right away. As I mentioned above Faye doesnt really use a cook time but we are also talking about a soil that is heavily comprised of recycled soil that has had time to work itself out.
  19. #19 Fungifan, May 3, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: May 3, 2013
    Some people need to stroke the technical hog. Or just like stroking hog im not sure.. Cook clean cycle "grow" what ever makes you happy. Use the best sorce humus you can find. Your ladies will love your for it. And it will only help your soil cook.. process nutrients better.

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