Compost Trial: Growing Broad Beans

Peat free Compost Trial: Growing Broad Beans

Dalefoot Composts have produced the top performing peat free composts in all of the Compost Trials that I’ve run over the past seven years.  Rather than just continually highlighting every year that Dalefoot Composts are the best peat free composts to use, I designed this Compost Trial to demonstrate methods you could use to get the best results from one of their products, namely Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost.

This Trial will also provide suggestions for using another peat free compost – B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost (although you could use another peat free compost or a spent compost in place of the B&Q compost).  I want to show you how you can achieve the best value for money and enjoy the most advantageous performance from these peat free composts.

Buying peat free compost

Compost packaging can be confusing.  Some compost brands’ packaging make their products appear very green and environmentally friendly; thanks to the images, colours, and the wording on the pack.  But the vast majority of composts that are offered for sale in the UK, contain peat.

If you want to purchase a peat free compost, check the packaging states that the compost is 100% peat free.  For the avoidance of any doubt, the two composts that I’ve used in this Compost Trial are both 100% peat free composts.

Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost

Dalefoot’s peat free organic composts have achieved fantastic results in my Compost Trials, winning all of my Compost Trials they’ve featured in.  One of my favourite Dalefoot Composts is this one, Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost, a concentrated, powerful organic compost, which is designed to be diluted with spent compost or garden soil to create a balanced, nutrient rich compost.

Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost is rather like elderflower cordial.  We wouldn’t ever think of drinking elderflower cordial in its neat, concentrated form – it would be quite revolting – undrinkable, and expensive.  Instead, we dilute a small quantity of elderflower cordial with tap water or carbonated water, to create a wonderfully refreshing drink that’s also more affordable.

Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost is a powerful, concentrated compost created from organic natural ingredients, including composted bracken and Herdwick sheep’s wool to create a nutrient rich compost that can be used in a variety of ways.

This compost is not designed to be used neat, it’s intended to be used in its diluted form.  Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost can be mixed with spent compost to reinvigorate the compost and create a viable growing medium.  Alternatively, Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost can be used as a mulch to improve the soil and provide additional nutrients for plants, or employed to improve water retention in free draining sandy soils, applied as a mulch to fertilise vegetables or flowering plants, or used in another manner that makes the most of this compost’s concentrated nutrient rich form.

The majority of composts on the market need refreshing after a few weeks.  Most growing mediums are unable to provide plants with all the nutrients they require after their first few weeks to a couple of months of growth; thereafter plants require weekly applications of liquid fertiliser or need potting on into fresh compost.  In contrast, I have found Dalefoot Composts to be long-lasting composts that continue supplying nutrients for an extended time; lasting for a year or two – depending on the plant grown, as some plants require richer growing mediums than others.

This Compost Trial aims to demonstrate the effects of diluting Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost with B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost.

If you’re interested, you can see all of my articles that feature Dalefoot Composts Double Strength Wool Compost, here, and you can see all of my articles about Dalefoot Composts, here.

B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost

B&Q describe B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost as being comprised of a blend of quality ingredients and balanced fertiliser to encourage healthy growth.  This compost is a multi-purpose compost, formulated for use in pots, containers, hanging baskets, window boxes, beds and borders.  B&Q advise that B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost feeds plants for up to six weeks.

If you’re interested, you can see all of my articles that feature B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost, here.

 

Compost Trial: Growing Broad Beans

For this Compost Trial, I demonstrate how you could dilute Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost and B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost.  I have trialled a number of different ratios of tempering Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost, mixing it with different quantities of B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost.

A number of my plastic trial containers were filled with each of the following percentages of B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost and Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost:

  • 100% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost
  • 75% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost and 25% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost
  • 50% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost and 50% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost
  • 75% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost and 25% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost
  • 100% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost

Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’

For this particular Peat Free Compost Trial, I opted to sow a Dwarf Broad Bean called ‘Robin Hood’ that I purchased from Chiltern Seeds.  I chose to sow seeds of this particular broad bean cultivar, as it produces dwarf, compact, broad bean plants that are ideal for container growing.  If you want to grow vegetables in containers, this is a great broad bean cultivar to grow!  Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds can be sown in sheltered locations in February; while seeds can be sown in sheltered and exposed areas from March to the end of May.  These broad bean plants don’t need stakes or supports; they’re naturally strong and stocky, dwarf plants.  You simply sow the seeds – watch the plants grow – water your Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants during dry periods – watch your plants flower and produce pods – continue watering your plants during periods of dry weather – then harvest your broad beans!

Growing broad beans in containers

I started this 2019 Peat Free Compost Trial on Sunday 7th April 2019, when six Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds were sown in each pot of compost.

Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds.

All of the broad bean seeds that were sown for this Compost Trial were sown directly into the compost in my large, plastic trial pots that I use for many of my Outdoor Trials.  I didn’t soak, scarify, stratify, or treat the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds in any way prior to sowing; the seeds were sown straight from the packet directly into the compost in my trial containers.

I didn’t pot the seedlings on at any stage; all of the seeds were sown directly into my large trial containers.

Pine needles

Broad bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants emerging, as pictured on the. Note the pine needles that have formed a layer on top of the compost.

While this Compost Trial was running, a nearby Scots pine tree, also known by its botanical name of Pinus sylvestris, was actively shedding its pine needles.  All of my trial containers were grouped together in the same area; thereby each container of compost was anointed with what appeared to be a similar quantity of pine needles; none of the plants escaped the pine needles!

These Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants were grown in a planter that contained 75% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 25% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost. As you can see, this pot has received a generous dose of pine needles. This photograph was taken on the 12th May 2019.

Germination rates

I’ve heard gardeners describing peat free composts as being growing mediums that prevent successful germination rates.  Not all peat free composts are created equally – I have purchased many poor quality peat free composts, but on the whole I’ve achieved excellent germination using peat free composts.  Here are the germination rates for the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds that were sown for this Compost Trial.

  • The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds that were sown in containers filled with 100% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost achieved a germination rate of 96%.
  • The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds that were sown in containers filled with 50% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 50% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost achieved a germination rate of 96%.
  • The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds that were sown in containers filled with 25% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 75% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost achieved a germination rate of 92%.
  • The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds that were sown in containers filled with 75% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 25% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost achieved a germination rate of 92%.
  • The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds that were sown in containers filled with 100% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost achieved a germination rate of 92%.

Irrigation

The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this Compost Trial were watered by the rain and by hand, during dry periods.  Although there was no set day or week (the plants were only watered by hand during periods of dry weather) that was allocated for watering the broad bean plants that were grown for this Compost Trial; all of the plants received the same quantity of water, which was administered at the same time.

I’ve found Dalefoot Composts to be very water retentive, these composts are comprised of composted bracken and sheep wool, which holds on to water.  I’ve found that I don’t need to water plants growing in Dalefoot Compost as often as I need to water plants growing in non-Dalefoot Compost.  Having said this, if one plant that was grown for this Compost Trial required water, all of the broad bean plants were watered, using the same amount of water.

Fertiliser

No fertilisers or plant feed was given to any of the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.  The plants were reliant on the nutrients they received from the composts they were grown in.

Broad bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants

100% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost

These Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants were grown in a planter that contained 100% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost. These photographs were taken on the 16th June 2019.

These Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants were grown in a planter that contained 100% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 0% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost. These photographs were taken on the 7th July 2019.

75% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost and 25% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost

These Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants were grown in a planter that contained 75% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 25% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost. These photographs were taken on the 16th June 2019.

These Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants were grown in a planter that contained 75% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 25% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost. These photographs were taken on the 7th July 2019.

50% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost and 50% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost

These Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants were grown in a planter that contained 50% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 50% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost. These photographs were taken on the 16th June 2019.

These Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants were grown in a planter that contained 50% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 50% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost. These photographs were taken on the 7th July 2019.

75% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost and 25% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost

These Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants were grown in a planter that contained 25% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 75% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost. These photographs were taken on the 16th June 2019.

These Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants were grown in a planter that contained 25% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 75% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost. These photographs were taken on the 7th July 2019.

100% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost

These Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants were grown in a planter that contained 0% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 100% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost. These photographs were taken on the 16th June 2019.

These Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants were grown in a planter that contained 0% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 100% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost. These photographs were taken on the 7th July 2019.

Birds and beneficial insects

Bees

A bumble bee trying to feed from a new and as yet unopened Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ flower, produced by one of the plants that was grown for this Compost Trial.

Broad beans are super plants for bees.  Large numbers of bees were seen tending to the flowers of the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.

Broad bean flowers are very decorative; they’re a great source of food for bees. This is Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ in flower.

Birds

Birds, including bluetits and other garden birds were sometimes seen picking aphids off the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.

Ladybirds

A Harlequin ladybird, pictured feasting on the broad bean aphids that were feeding on the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.

Many ladybirds, including Harlequin ladybirds and native ladybirds, were seen on the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.  Ladybirds feed on aphids, so they’re a welcome visitor.

Pests and diseases

I hasten to add that all of the pests I’ve listed here are part of the fabric of life, we should try to encourage a balance in nature.  I don’t believe in killing or harming any of these creatures, it’s entirely unnecessary and unkind.

No attempts were made the prevent any pests and diseases from attacking the plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.  The plants were watered with tap water, no biological controls, sprays, or treatments were used.  Similarly, no barriers or traps were used at any point whilst this Compost Trial was running.

When pests were discovered during this trial, I recorded their presence but left the slug, snail, aphid, caterpillar, etc, in place.

Aphids

Here’s another aphid, pictured on a pine needle, next to an emerging Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seedling.

I spotted large numbers of aphids on the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.  The aphids appeared as early as when the seedlings were first emerging from the compost!  The first aphids were spotted on the broad bean plants, on the 27th April 2019.

I suspect that these aphids were delivered along with the pine needles that fell from the neighbouring Pinus sylvestis tree.  They could be a monophagous aphid species that only feed on pines or they may feed on a number of plants – I’m not 100% certain.

These tiny aphids are about one mm in size, they’re pictured on one of the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seedlings that was grown for my Compost Trial.

Black Bean Aphids

Black bean aphids feasting on the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.

Towards the later stages of this Compost Trial, it was easy to discover Black Bean Aphids on the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.

If your broad bean plants suffer with infestations of black bean aphid, simply pinching out the tips of your broad bean plants will usually solve the problem overnight.  During this Compost Trial, none of the tips of the broad bean plants were removed.

No attempt was made to remove any of these black bean aphids.  The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants were all affected by similar numbers of black bean aphid, during this Compost Trial.

Broad Bean Seed Beetle

I discovered these broad bean seed beetle larvae (Bruchus rufimanus), whilst I was harvesting the broad beans, from the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for my Compost Trial. I took this photograph on the 21st July 2019.

On the 21st July 2019, whilst I was gathering the final harvest of beans from the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this Compost Trial, I discovered some Broad Bean Seed Beetle larvae, feeding on a few of the broad beans that were grown for this Compost Trial.  In so far as I could tell, I wasn’t aware of the larvae being more concentrated on the plants grown in any particular compost mix; their spread appeared random.

Caterpillars

I discovered this caterpillar, whilst I was evaluating the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants grown for my Compost Trial. I’m not 100% certain what species this caterpillar is – it resembles an Ochsenheimeria taurella larvae, but I understand these caterpillars feed on grasses – not broad beans. I took this photograph on the 21st July 2019.

I was surprised to find this caterpillar feeding on one of the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that was grown for this Compost Trial.  I suspect this is Ochsenheimeria taurella – the larvae of a brown, narrow, furry looking moth.  However, my identification may be incorrect, as Ochsenheimeria taurella larvae usually feed on grasses.

I discovered this caterpillar, whilst I was evaluating the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants grown for my Compost Trial. I’m not 100% certain what species this caterpillar is – it resembles an Ochsenheimeria taurella larvae, but I understand these caterpillars feed on grasses – not broad beans. I took this photograph on the 21st July 2019.

Crickets

This Speckled Bush Cricket (also known by its scientific name of Leptophyes punctatissima) was regularly found on the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this particular Compost Trial.

I often spotted a Speckled Bush Cricket on the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.  As before, the cricket was left alone to roam around the broad bean plants.  No attempts were made to discourage the cricket from visiting these plants.

Slugs and snails

No slug or snail traps, barriers or other deterrents were used during this Compost Trial.  When slugs and snails were sighted they were left to feed on any of the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this trial.

Slugs and snails were discovered regularly during this Compost Trial.  Some slight slug and snail damage was recorded on a few of the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this trial, but this was minimal; no plant’s potential harvest was affected by the presence of slugs or snails during this particular Compost Trial.

None of the compost blends produced plants that attracted slugs or snails more than an another.  Similarly, none of the compost blends seemed to give the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants any protection from slugs and snails.

I took this photograph on the 21st July 2019, whilst I was evaluating the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants grown for my Compost Trial.

The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this Compost Trial looked rather scrappy towards the end of the Trial, but there were no serious problems that impacted the plants’ harvest potential.

I took this photograph on the 21st July 2019, whilst I was evaluating the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants grown for my Compost Trial.

Compost Trial Results:

I took this photograph on the 21st July 2019, while I was evaluating the harvest of broad beans grown for my Compost Trial.

Harvesting the broad beans

There were two harvesting dates for the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.  The first harvest was gathered on the 7th July 2019.  While the second harvest was taken on the 21st July 2019.

This chart shows the total harvest of unshelled broad bean pods, in grams, produced by the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown in each compost blend. The percentages refer to the quantity of Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost that was used to formulate that particular blend of the two composts (Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost and B&Q Verve Multipurpose Peat Free Compost). 0% Dalefoot = 100% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost.
This chart shows the harvest of unshelled broad beans, in grams, produced per plant, for each of the compost blends that were featured in this Compost Trial. The percentages refer to the quantity of Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost that was used to formulate that particular blend of the two composts (Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost and B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost). 0% Dalefoot = 100% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost.
This chart shows the total harvest of shelled broad beans in grams, produced per plant for each compost blend. The percentages refer to the quantity of Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost that was used to formulate that particular blend of the two composts (Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost and B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost). 0% Dalefoot = 100% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost

Compost costs

One way that you can get the best of both worlds – to use a great compost without a great cost – is to mix spent or a cheaper peat free compost with Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost, a concentrated compost made of powerful ingredients that is designed to be used in this manner.  By combining a top quality, concentrated compost formula with your own spent compost you can enjoy excellent growing performance and increased yield, at a greatly reduced cost.

How the different compost blends performed

The key result to note from this Compost Trial is that when using a cheap peat-free compost, you can improve the performance of your growing medium significantly by mixing in a small amount of premium concentrated peat-free compost.  Adding just one-part Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost to three-parts B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost generated a 70% yield increase in the harvest of the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown for this Compost Trial!

The two composts used in this Compost Trial come in at very different price-points.  B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost costs £3.33 for a 50L bag, at the time of writing (Feb 2019), which works out at just 7p per litre.  Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost costs £10.99 for a 30L bag, which works out at 36p per litre – over five times the price of the B&Q Compost.

I must mention that the price I’ve given for Dalefoot Double Strength is the price you would pay if you purchased one bag, but by increasing the number of compost bags in your order, the price you pay per bag drops.  So, if you purchased more than 30 bags of Dalefoot Double Strength, you would pay less than 30p per litre.  If you club together with family, friends, or your allotment association, to get a bulk order of compost delivered to one address, you can make a saving.

With the Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost, a little goes a long way.  If you were to use a similar sized container to the pots I’ve used for this Compost Trial, and you sowed six Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds, as I have for this Compost Trial, you’d use around 80p of B&Q Verve Compost.  But adding £1.35p worth of Dalefoot Double Strength Compost could almost double the yield from your plants, allowing you to grow a greater harvest in a small space.

This Compost Trial demonstrates that Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost works just as it is designed to be used.  This is not a compost that’s designed to be used neat – the compost is too strong – used neat it actually lowers the yield of the crop.  Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost really does need to be mixed with another compost to achieve the best results.

Final compost ranking: Harvest per plant


Rank

Compost Type

Conclusions

1




The best performing compost blend in this Compost Trial was a mix of 75% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost and 25% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost.  The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown in containers filled with this compost produced the greatest harvest of broad beans out of all the plants that were grown for this Compost Trial!

2




In second place, is the compost blend comprised of 50% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost and 50% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost.  The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown in containers filled with this compost produced the second largest harvest of broad beans out of all the plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.

3




In third place, is the compost blend comprised of 75% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost and 25% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost.  The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown in containers filled with this compost produced the third largest harvest of broad beans out of all of the plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.

4




In fourth place, is the compost blend comprised of 100% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost.  The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown in containers filled with this compost produced the fourth largest harvest of broad beans out of all of the plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.

5




In fifth place, is the compost blend comprised of 100% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost.  The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants that were grown in containers filled with this compost produced the fifth largest harvest of broad beans out of all of the plants that were grown for this Compost Trial.

Conclusions

  • Combining Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost with B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost creates an effective peat free compost to grow broad beans and other plants.
  • The lowest germination rate for the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds that were sown for this Compost Trial was 92%, this was achieved by the seeds that were sown in containers filled with 25% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 75% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost.  The same germination rate of 92% was achieved by the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds that were sown in containers filled with 75% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 25% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost.  The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds that were sown in containers filled with 100% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost also achieved a germination rate of 92%.
  • The highest germination rate during this Compost Trial was 96%, this was achieved by the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds that were sown in containers filled with 100% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost.  The Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ seeds that were sown in containers filled with 50% B&Q Verve Peat Free Multipurpose Compost and 50% Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost also achieved a germination rate of 96%.
  • Both Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost and B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost performed better when they were blended together in any combination, compared to being used neat.
  • In this Compost Trial, the top performing ratio was to mix one-part Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost with three-parts of B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost.
  • When one-part Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost was mixed with three-parts B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost the harvest increased by 41% compared to the harvest of broad beans achieved by the Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ plants grown in containers of neat B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost.
  • Good quality peat free composts are available to gardeners.

B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost is available from B&Q Stores.

Dalefoot Double Strength Wool Compost is available from Dalefoot Composts and from other stockists.

If you’re interested, you can see all of my articles that feature Dalefoot Composts Double Strength Wool Compost, here and you can see all of the articles I’ve written that mention Dalefoot Composts, here.

If you’re interested, you can see all of my articles that feature B&Q Verve Peat Free Multi-Purpose Compost, here.

Further Trials………..

Compost Trial Reports

To see all of my Compost Trials, please click here.

To read advice on planting up containers, please click here.

Scented Daffodil Trial Reports

To see the results of my second Scented Daffodil Trial, please click here.

To read the results of my Scented Daffodil Container Trial, please click here.

To read the results of my first Scented Daffodil Trial, please click here.

Slug and Snail Trials

To see the results of my Slug and Snail Trial and discover the best methods of protecting your plants from slugs and snails, please click here.

To read about using nematodes to protect your plants from slugs and snails, please click here.

Sweet Pea Trial Reports

To read the results of my 2017 Sweet Pea Trial, please click here.

To read the results of my 2016 Sweet Pea Trial, please click here.

To read the results of my 2015 Sweet Pea Trial, please click here.

Terrarium, Vivarium, and Orchidarium Trials

To see how my Orchidarium was created, please click here.

To see the design of my Rainforest Terrarium, please click here.

To read the first part of my White Orchid BiOrbAir Terrarium Trial, please click here.

To read the first part of my Madagascar BiOrbAir Terrarium Trial, please click here.

To read the first part of my Miniature Orchid BiOrbAir Terrarium Trial, please click here.

To see a planting list of ferns, orchids, and other plants that are perfectly suited to growing inside terrariums and bottle gardens, please click here.

To read about the general care I give to my orchids and terrarium plants, and the general maintenance I give to my BiOrbAir terrariums, please click here.

To read how I track the temperature, humidity, and light conditions inside my terrariums, please click here.

Tomato Trials

To read about my Trial of New Tomato Varieties, please click here.

Vegetable Trials

To see all of my Vegetable Trials, please click here.

Other articles you might like:

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