Anyone have experience with goat manure?

Discussion in 'Organic Gardening' started by Cayuga Morning, Feb 28, 2015.

  1. Cayuga Morning

    Cayuga Morning Strong Ash Plants Contributor

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    I have a source of free goat manure. Any advice about hour to use it? Does it need to be composted first? If so, what is the best way to do this? Is it likely to come with a lot of straw?
     
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  3. eileen

    eileen Resident Taxonomist Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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  4. marlingardener

    marlingardener Mighty Oak

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    Cayuga, yes goat manure needs to be composted. It also tends to clump up in the compost pile, so spread it around as much as possible. We received several feed bags of the stuff when we lived in town, and since goats eat almost anything I found it had more weed seeds than horse or cow manure.
    The manure we received was from free range goats, so I don't know about straw. I think Eileen's link explains that.
    It's good stuff for the garden, and you are lucky to get some. Just don't put it on plants directly, let it compost for about three months or more, and watch out for weeds if the goats are free range.
     
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  5. Cayuga Morning

    Cayuga Morning Strong Ash Plants Contributor

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    Thanks Eileen & MG. I guess I will have to compost it this summer, use it next summer. I've just contracted for a plot in the community garden, so maybe I'll get me a composting bin & do it there. Or maybr I can build something.
     



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  6. marlingardener

    marlingardener Mighty Oak

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    Cayuga, you're in New England, so if you get the goat manure now, it will be composted enough to use by June. Even with cold weather the manure will break down enough to be usable as a side dressing by the time your plants are big enough to need a boost.
    Depending on how big your plot is, you can have two small compost piles--one working, one ready to go. We used pallets (free) and T-posts. You can make them the size you want, but ours are about 6'x6' and 4' tall.
     

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  7. Cayuga Morning

    Cayuga Morning Strong Ash Plants Contributor

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    MG--I love the look of your compost piles. Is that crazy or what? We need Waretrop here to make a spoof of my comment!
    Anyway, my community garden plot is only 20X20. I'm not sure how big I'll want to make the bins. I'll know better when our 5' of snow recedes & I can actually get to the plot. Right now I only have a aerial google map photograph to go by.

    I will have to get in touch with the woman with the goat manure. I don't know if it is an outside pile (& thus covered by 5' of snow) or if it is in her barn, etc. I certainly hope you are correct, that I can use it this year. We have had unusually cold temps here this winter. The average lately has been 20, whereas the norm is 40 for the last week in February.
     
  8. marlingardener

    marlingardener Mighty Oak

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    Cayuga, only a true gardener can see the beauty of compost piles! Ours do work well, but as we add gardens, we may need to add a third bin.
    It's been unusually cold here in central Texas, too. Not the temps you have, but cold for us. Soon we'll all be posting about planting, mulching, side-dressing, and all the fun stuff!
     
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