Levington seed compost

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Candide

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Levington seed compost
« on: March 23, 2023, 20:03 »
"With added John Innes"  whatever they mean by that.  Got a bag of this and I'm disappointed by the look and the texture.  Seems to be mostly brown fibres and looks even worse when wet.  If it allows things to germinate then all is well but I won't buy any more

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Goosegirl

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Re: Levington seed compost
« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2023, 08:43 »
Seed compost usually consists of peat or coir which can be enhanced with John Innes which is soil-based, plus a small amount of nutrients. I've given up on many of the well known ones as the quality is not what it was and you have to sieve quite a lot of lumpy/ fibrous stuff out before you can use it which is a waste of money. I'm now onto Sylvagrow which has a lovely fine texture so is usable for a light covering for those seeds that need it, plus it's good for potting-on etc. It's not cheap but better than a cheap one which doesn't do the job.
Spring always comes when we sow the seeds of life.

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coldandwindy

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Re: Levington seed compost
« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2023, 10:46 »
"With added John Innes"  whatever they mean by that.  Got a bag of this and I'm disappointed by the look and the texture.  Seems to be mostly brown fibres and looks even worse when wet.  If it allows things to germinate then all is well but I won't buy any more
I bought some Levington's  compost a couple of years ago. It was quite expensive & seemed to be mostly sand! Not buying it again.

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mumofstig

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Re: Levington seed compost
« Reply #3 on: March 24, 2023, 11:47 »
You could always mix your own there are several recipes on line
eg https://blog.mr-fothergills.co.uk/make-your-own-seed-starting-mix/
and making compost at home

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Goosegirl

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Re: Levington seed compost
« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2023, 14:51 »
MOS, good advice there. Just thinking of taking a pic of my Sylvagrow compost if anyone is interested in how it looks. Mods, I have no connection to this firm but just trying to give my honest opinion.

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rowlandwells

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Re: Levington seed compost
« Reply #5 on: March 24, 2023, 18:11 »
I'm in the process of trying some peat free compost as a trial and just a a trial  I'm more than happy using my clover peat based for my seed sowing and I am somewhat surprised that Levington compost is as bad as you say it is so thanks for mentioning that Candide one brand Il keep clear of buying in the future

I'm dreading the day when they ban the sale of peat based compost because this peat free is to my mind not up to the peat based standard and if you sieve it you will  end up with only half a bag for seed sowing if that and you know where yo can stick your wood fibres and that's not in my seed tray and lets look at cost some of the peat free composts that  some favour is more expensive than a good  peat based one so does that make any cense to buy it and then adding nutrients  to the compost that should last up to 6 weeks without adding any nutrients come back peat based all is forgiven

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Nobbie

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Re: Levington seed compost
« Reply #6 on: March 24, 2023, 22:32 »
I'm in the process of trying some peat free compost as a trial and just a a trial  I'm more than happy using my clover peat based for my seed sowing and I am somewhat surprised that Levington compost is as bad as you say it is so thanks for mentioning that Candide one brand Il keep clear of buying in the future

I'm dreading the day when they ban the sale of peat based compost because this peat free is to my mind not up to the peat based standard and if you sieve it you will  end up with only half a bag for seed sowing if that and you know where yo can stick your wood fibres and that's not in my seed tray and lets look at cost some of the peat free composts that  some favour is more expensive than a good  peat based one so does that make any cense to buy it and then adding nutrients  to the compost that should last up to 6 weeks without adding any nutrients come back peat based all is forgiven

Just checked and theyre banning it in 2024, so Ill be stocking up this year. Dont want to be caught out like I was with slug pellets.

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Candide

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Re: Levington seed compost
« Reply #7 on: March 25, 2023, 15:57 »
Did sieve that Levington stuff which eliminated the bigger fibres and gravel but not really better after I'd done that.
Will now do a gargle for Sylvagrow and see if available locally

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rowlandwells

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Re: Levington seed compost
« Reply #8 on: March 25, 2023, 17:54 »
I would be interesting to see how much that Sylvagrow cost's per bag and the bag size where we are paying 17.00 for 3 LTR bags of peat based ?

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missmoneypenny

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Re: Levington seed compost
« Reply #9 on: March 25, 2023, 21:42 »
Just bought 3 bags of Sylvagrow seed compost , 6:50 each, not v big Id say 15L each. Lets hope it performs better than  last years pitiful stuff ( various brands). The guy at the garden centre said it was the best stuff for seedlings because the texture means the soil wraps around the seeds and allows  better root development.

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snowdrops

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Re: Levington seed compost
« Reply #10 on: March 26, 2023, 08:41 »
Im selling 40ltr of Sylvagrow in the garden club store at 8 as of today, jus5 had a delivery on Thursday of 75 bags that Melcourt have given us in replacement for some that we had issues with last year. Ive seen it online at considerably more than that. It does have a nice texture, but according to the chap Ive been dealing with you need to treat peat free differently to peat based. Water from the top, dont put trays or pots to soak up water.
Hes coming to give us a talk in September on it, so all our members can get the best out of it, mind I hope all 188 dont turn up.
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coldandwindy

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Re: Levington seed compost
« Reply #11 on: March 26, 2023, 10:25 »
Im selling 40ltr of Sylvagrow in the garden club store at 8 as of today, jus5 had a delivery on Thursday of 75 bags that Melcourt have given us in replacement for some that we had issues with last year. Ive seen it online at considerably more than that. It does have a nice texture, but according to the chap Ive been dealing with you need to treat peat free differently to peat based. Water from the top, dont put trays or pots to soak up water.
Hes coming to give us a talk in September on it, so all our members can get the best out of it, mind I hope all 188 dont turn up.
To my mind if a compost only works if you water from the top then it isn't suitable for seedlings.
I have a whole table of trays & pots on capillary matting. Don't believe I am unusual in that.

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Goosegirl

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Re: Levington seed compost
« Reply #12 on: March 26, 2023, 11:03 »
I usually water sown seeds from the bottom as you can see how the compost darkens at the top so they don't get waterlogged. Don't understand the "science" for watering Sylvagro stuff from the top. Whatever rocks your boat as they say. At least I have a tomato seedling growing in my plant pot on the east facing kitchen window ledge!


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snowdrops

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Re: Levington seed compost
« Reply #13 on: March 26, 2023, 14:19 »
Here is part of the reply I received from my contact at Melcourt
One thing that has been noted (although I doubt has been a factor in this) is that some gardeners are now recommending a submerging of trays for watering.  This has never been a method I have used as a commercial nurseryman and is not recommended by manufacturers (certainly not us).  Over time, salt can build up in growing mediums as base fertiliser degrade, so a thorough traditional overhead water will flush those and effectively reset the balance.  Submerging simple puts everything int solution throughout the growing medium and might do more damage.
 
Until we have fully investigated these are just comments on things to look out for/consider and we may never get a definitive answer as time tends to hide the reasons.

I cannot begin to stress how helpful they were & how quickly they/he responded when I reported some issues last year with their composts. The chap came & took various samples back with him & immediately offered to either refund or replace the composts that I had purchased through our supplier. Unlike another manufacturer who eventually contacted me but now hasnt been back in contact after we spoke , even though he agreed finding large pieces of tree ( 1 piece 7 long and at least 2 in diameter,was unacceptable!)
 Melcourt however have provided me with 75 bags free of charge for the approximate 40 bags I purchased last year.
Im crossing my fingers that the compost trials well with myself & a few other members this year as I think they need need supporting if for nothing but their customer service.

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missmoneypenny

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Re: Levington seed compost
« Reply #14 on: March 26, 2023, 14:42 »
I didnt even know that watering from the bottom was a thing, I always water form the top but I admit it can be hard to give just enough without wondering if youve overdone it or dislodged the germinating seeds.



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