Monday, January 29, 2007

Gardens Love SMS



Gardens Love SMS

What helps your lawn, shrubs, garden and trees, offers environmentally friendly ways to recycle, and comes from the nearest mushroom farm? Spent mushroom substrate or SMS for short. It seems that every home owner on my block is striving to out-do the other with their green lawn, lush shrubs, and big, colourful flowers. And who is the only one on the block with the greenest lawn, bushiest shrubs and brightest flowers? Well me of course.

My secret is finally out, I use spent mushroom substrate.

I hear you asking, what exactly is SMS? Spent mushroom substrate is derived from 100% organic materials such as straw, peat moss, horse manure, corn cobs, soybean meal and gypsum. Once pasteurized this material becomes a substrate on which mushrooms will be grown. Because the growing needs of mushrooms and green plants is very different, very little of the substrates nutrients are used during the mushroom growing process. After the mushrooms are harvested the farmer is left with a nutrient filled substrate that is an ideal soil conditioner for outdoor gardening. Isn’t that amazing?

Now there are many other benefits to using SMS and not just to me, but the environment as well. Using mushroom compost in the garden helps to recycle a product which would otherwise be disposed of as waste. As the substrate itself is a recycled by-products from other industries, when spent mushroom substrate is used on a garden or lawn you are actually doubling the recycling. You also know those really hot summers when water bans start to take effect? Think of SMS, it stores of to 70% of its own weight in water. You can use less water, once again being kind to the environment, and still have a visually stimulating garden and lawn.

The most important part: how to properly use it. SMS can be used as a mulch, soil conditioner, and potting mix additive. Just mix it in with the existing soil or spread a thin layer out on the lawn, and you’re done. It is great for flowering gardens, trees and shrubs and vegetable and herb gardens.

Now all you gardeners out there you would probably like to know the analysis:
- pH 6.9
- Dry matter: 50.5%
- Organic Carbon 28.0%
- Nitrogen 1.8%
- Phosphorus 0.8%
- Potassium 1.6%
- Other organic material 17.3%
- Carbon: Nitrogen ratio 31.0

So now you know the secret to a great lawn and garden. Try SMS, your lawn and garden will please everyone at your next outdoor BBQ or picnic. There is nothing wrong with letting your friends think you have one amazing green thumb.

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