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Ohio Earth Food

March 12th, 2011

Last week I finally made it up to Ohio Earth Food in Hartville, OH to get all of my soil amendments for the coming spring. When you have a big garden, buying amendments like bone meal, blood meal, kelp meal, greensand and others can break the bank if you buy those tiny bags at the local greenhouse. I highly recommend finding an organic farm supply store in your area. Even if you have to drive an hour or so to get there, you’ll save plenty, especially if you stock up once a year or every other year.

We filled our little car with bags of all sorts of things for the coming gardening season. Mr Chiots and I are expanding our garden at home so I’ll be needing to add a lot of amendments to the soil. A few of the products I purchased are trial runs to see how the product works. What made it into my little car?

RE-VITA COMPOST PLUS (3-3-3) – A 100% natural, composted fertilizer of poultry manure, kelp, and humate. One of the most complete fertilizers available. Contains a balanced source of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potash in a slow release form which feeds the plant throughout the season. The addition of kelp and humate provides a complex of trace minerals and bio-stimulants easily assimilated by plants. These substances enhance germination, root growth and overall health of the plant. Re-Vita improves structure, water holding capacity and aeration of the soil. It also revitalizes the biological activity in the soil. Re-Vita is in a uniform, granular form which is easy to use. Excellent for gardens, flowers, shrubs, trees, and field crops. For gardens apply 5 lbs. per 100 row ft. or 2 lbs. per 100 sq. ft; Fruit and shade trees 2-3 lbs. per inch of diameter. Lawns 50 lbs. per 3,000 sq. ft. Field crops 250-300 lbs. per acre.

JERSEY GREENSAND – A 7% potash base exchange mineral mined from a marine deposit. Also contains 22 other minerals. Helps loosen compacted soils. Highly recommended for conditioning pastures, lawns, orchards, fields, and gardens. Apply 2-4 lbs. per 100 sq. ft. or up to 1,000 lbs. per acre.

DRIED BLOOD – A slow release, 12% organic nitrogen source. Excellent as a side dressing when extra nitrogen is needed. Stimulates bacterial growth. Also useful as a temporary deer and rabbit repellent. Use 2-3 lbs. per 100 sq. ft or as a side dress.

BONE MEAL – Steamed, finely ground bone providing 12% phosphorus, 22% calcium and 4% nitrogen. Promotes strong, vigorous bulbs and healthy root systems and good blooming. Excellent for flowers, roses, garden bulbs, shrubs and trees. Use 5 lbs. per 100 sq. ft.

GYPSUM – Pelletized, mined, natural calcium sulfate. Supplies 21% calcium and 16% sulfur; Loosens tight clay soils, aiding aeration and water penetration. Use when calcium and sulfur are needed and pH is high. Use 2-3 lbs. per 100 sq. ft

SEA-MIN KELP MEAL – Ascophyllum Nodosum kelp meal which contains 60 trace minerals in chelated form, 14 vitamins, plant growth regulators, enzymes, and hormones. Research shows that kelp improves seed germination, root and plant growth, fruit set, and overall health of plants. Makes plants more disease and stress resistant. Increases soil fertility and microbial population. Broadcast using ¾ lb. per 100 sq. ft. or 200 lbs. per acre. As animal feed supplement see Feed Supplements Section.

AGRO-LIG HUMATE – A mined, naturally occurring organic leonardite containing 65-75% high quality humic acids, 31% carbon, and a complex of other nutrients similar to chelates. Stimulates plant enzymes, root growth and beneficial soil organisms. Continued use improves the structure and organic content of the soil. For gardens apply 2 lbs. per 1000 sq. ft.; Field crops 100 lbs. per acre.

I also purchased a bag of worm castings for my homemade potting soil and a bag of their blend of potting soil to try. I used their potting soil for a planter of lettuce I started last week. I like my home mix better, so I’ll keep making it. I may have a few more things to buy so I’ll probably be heading back sometime soon as I still need some rock phosphate and more gypsum. It’s a good thing it’s only a half hour away.

Where do you buy your soil amendments? Do you have a great farm supply store to recommend for any readers in your area?

8 Comments to “Ohio Earth Food”
  1. amy on March 12, 2011 at 9:58 am

    I have really never amended my soil. I have made raised beds using my own compost and an asparagus bed by adding sand but other than that nothing comes to mind. I find it all very fascinating but also overwhelming for some reason. My plants would probably love it if I were to explore this avenue more. Thanks Susy for doing the foot work and mental work and for minimizing some of the confusion. Your like a green gardener super hero:)

    Reply to amy's comment

    • Susy on March 12, 2011 at 10:09 am

      If you are lucky enough to have good soil, compost and a few amendments at times is probably all you need. If you’re like me and inherited abused lean soil you have to do something to kick start the health of the soil. It’s a bit like detoxing yourself. Adding amendments helps the soil develop into healthy soil much more quickly. Instead of spending 10-15 years fixing my soil until I can grow, adding amendments allows me to only spend a few years growing the soil before I can grow plants.

      Amendments are also very helpful is you have soil that leans toward one end of the spectrum, clay or sandy. I have clay soil in my front garden and sandy in the back garden. Some amendments like gypsum will help tremendously with soil structure.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  2. Kaytee on March 12, 2011 at 4:11 pm

    Thanks for the info. I want to do lots of soil amending this year, but I can’t find any place that sells organics in large quantities around Central NY. I’ll be in Akron at the end of May, so I might have to sneak away from the family and go to Ohio Earth Food.

    Reply to Kaytee's comment

    • Susy on March 13, 2011 at 6:38 am

      If you sign up on their website they’ll send you a small catalog that explains all the stuff they sell and it’s benefits. Shoot me an e-mail before you come and maybe if I’m available we can meet for coffee and head to Ohio Earth Food.

      If you ask around at your local organic farms they might be able to give you a good local source for amendments.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  3. Jennifer Fisk on March 12, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    Some amendments suchs as green sand, I get at my local, one mile down the road, organic gardening center. My seaweed, I gather off the local beaches. Rabbit and chicken manure i have readily available here. Composted horse manure I get from a friend. I do often add organic fertilizer which is chicken based from VT.

    Reply to Jennifer Fisk's comment

  4. MAYBELLINE on March 12, 2011 at 9:50 pm

    You inspired me. I went out and got mulch for my fruit trees. What a difference. I use Gardener & Bloome Harvest Supreme. It certainly is stinky stuff but my tree beds look better.

    Locally, a fertilizer company is in big trouble for selling synthetic fertilizer as organic. So many farmers have been affected. This guy was dastardly.

    Reply to MAYBELLINE's comment

  5. Corner Garden Sue on March 12, 2011 at 11:31 pm

    I wrote a long comment, but when I went to subscribe to follow up comments, it disappeared, and I couldn’t find it in my history.

    I’ve used a variety of soil amendments, including my compost, bagged composted cow manure, coop poop, and alfalfa horse feed.

    Do you have your recipe for potting soil somewhere on your blog? I’d like to try making my own this year.

    Reply to Corner Garden Sue's comment

    • Susy on March 13, 2011 at 6:47 am

      Thanks for reminding me, I added a link to my home mixed potting soil in the post, but here’s a quick reference.

      My basic recipe is:
      1 part compost
      1 part peat moss
      1 part vermiculite
      and some organic fertilizer of some kind (I prefer Dr Earth Fertilizers)

      You can also use a mix of amendments for fertilizer & minerals. Here’s what I often add: 1/2 cup of each: lime, greensand, rock phosphate, kelp meal, soybean meal (I usually use blood meal & bone meal in place of soybean & kelp meal)

      Reply to Susy's comment


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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