Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

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peebee
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Re: Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

#41

Post: # 28086Unread post peebee
Thu Aug 13, 2020 5:07 pm

PlainJane wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 7:27 pm
Barb_FL wrote:
Wed Aug 12, 2020 7:04 am
OTOH - AKMARK grows 2 plants per 4 gallon bag and does continual feeding of Chem-gro (like Masterblend but different vendor) and his production is out of sight too. BTW - Where is AKMARK?
Wondering the same ...
I PM'd him at the other site telling him about this one as soon as we were set up here and he replied that he was so busy he couldn't even think about joining another forum. Just so you all know. Hope he changes his mind. Yeah we miss him.
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Re: Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

#42

Post: # 28164Unread post Mark_Thompson
Fri Aug 14, 2020 1:40 pm

Just watched that hour and a half YouTube video from Dave, pretty informative. His yields were super impressive, very reminiscent of those pics of Wilber’s whisky barrel grows.

I was struck by the fact that he seems to be doing pretty much everything Wilber does, except store bought (and less grumpy), but doesn’t mention Wilber in the whole hour and a half.

Going to go read his website a bit, always more to learn...
Wet and windy side of a Hawaiian island, growing in ground in the summer and in pots in the winter.

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Re: Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

#43

Post: # 28191Unread post MsCowpea
Fri Aug 14, 2020 5:53 pm

I was struck by the fact that he seems to be doing pretty much everything Wilber does, except store bought (and less grumpy), but doesn’t mention Wilber in the whole hour and a half.

I wish there was a little shoutout to Wilber. (And a reference notation on the instructions as well as people might want to read the book.) Dave mentions a record of 300 pounds of tomatoes from a Better Boy which is Wilber’s record.
To Dave’s credit he says something to the effect that he studied, researched , and trialed various ways to grow tomatoes so he didn’t say the system was his original creation. He just didn’t give specific references but some of Wilber’s ideas are evident if you are familiar with the technique.

Plus Dave did come up with some modifications and new additions that makes it much easier for the average gardener. And he has adapted his system to use with self-watering containers. Plus he shares freely and volunteers his time to help others.

Wilber says he pondered nature’s way of growing. He also studied and researched organic growing until he came up with his total ‘system’.
Definitely the granddaddy of a hugely successful high production system though he does it without chemical fertilizers.

I wish someone in the south had started a compost manufacturing business using kudzu
and cow manure. Call it Wilber’s Kudzu Compost and give his very specific instructions on the bag on how to use it. That would have cemented his legacy.
🙂
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Last edited by MsCowpea on Sat Oct 17, 2020 9:01 am, edited 5 times in total.
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Re: Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

#44

Post: # 28205Unread post MsCowpea
Fri Aug 14, 2020 8:13 pm

My modified Wilber pile has shrunk by 8 inches. It had cooled to 145 degrees. Going to turn it.

When I started the pile I looked around for something I could use to contain it. Wilber used wire cages but that means you have to lift all the ingredients up and over from the beginning and that gets tiresome. I found pieces of fencing I had got at Lowe’s to fence out peacocks.
Took them and hinged 3 of them with electric zip ties. Then braced with a few t-stakes (?) Closed off the front with a shorter piece (to make it easier to fork in the pile ) but progressively raised it up until eventually another fencing piece was put in place.

To turn the pile I removed one piece and then just pulled it away from the pile. Repositioned it and started turning it over to its new place. Very easy. I don’t have a dedicated 3 section compost bin.
ECC55DF4-771F-4E30-A0B2-831523C0740B.jpeg
ECC55DF4-771F-4E30-A0B2-831523C0740B.jpeg (3.89 MiB) Viewed 4481 times
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"When we kill off the natural enemies of a pest we inherit their work."
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Re: Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

#45

Post: # 28555Unread post MsCowpea
Tue Aug 18, 2020 2:15 pm

I was going to try out both Wilber’s method and Dave’s modifications but I think I will just stick to Wilber’s original system as I will become too overwhelmed with too many experiments. It would be too hard to mix up Wilber’s compost tea and a batch of Dave’s made with bagged cow manure and keep it all straight. I will use the tea more often as Dave recommends. He makes it like Wilber only uses purchased manure/compost. When I followed Wilber’s original ideas in the past I have always used modifications to his techniques as well. I add additional organic fertilizer (dry and liquid) throughout the season and amend the hole with some potting mix as my pH can sometimes be high. I would like to try Dave’s system he uses in his self watering containers with store bought inputs. Maybe I could just make 5 gallons of the manure tea with the bagged stuff weekly rather than 55 gallons.

I have always been interested in various ways to grow tomatoes.
Maybe the old timers from Gardenweb and early days of Tomatoville will remember Earl from Earl’s Faux fame. He had a very successful way of growing tomatoes and his plants were beautiful. He used bagged cow manure and bagged humus in the hole . And fertilizer as well. (Great Tomato by the way though I don’t know if today’s version is as good.).

https://www.houzz.com/discussions/21670 ... g-tomatoes
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Re: Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

#46

Post: # 28588Unread post peebee
Tue Aug 18, 2020 10:55 pm

@MsCowpea I think that's a good idea to stick to one method for your next experiment. I'm sort of like you in that I've tried almost every new method for growing tomatoes that I see. Yes I've done that Japanese fertilizer ring and that growing in garbage thing. I like to try new stuff if I can. But it can get overwhelming. I always tell myself that this is the year I'm truly downsizing but do I listen? :lol: Sure enough I found myself cursing as the garden peaked and again as the season wound down. Too many things going on! Fall/winter gives me a breather as the cool season boring plants grow.

Don't worry I'll try the Dave method, you do Wilbur's. We can compare notes although with our opposite seasons we won't be concurrent. I just have to try his way. I think I'll even buy the plants instead of growing from seed, just cuz he does.
But I haven't decided yet whether I'll do what he does in my EBs. I'll have to do more research.
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Re: Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

#47

Post: # 28590Unread post MsCowpea
Wed Aug 19, 2020 4:20 am

Peebee, glad you are trying Dave’s method with the purchased ingredients. His results look phenomenal. Dave’s SWC are like Raybo’s which are a lot bigger than earthboxes. But it would be interesting to try it with an EB just to see if increased production made all the extra work worth it. Basically you add the bagged manure to a peat based mix and apply bagged manure tea one or twice a week and liquid fertilizer according to directions. Do this INSTEAD of a strip of fertilizer that is covered.

Wilber talks about applying tea when your plants aren’t growing as big as they should. I usually do all my regular containers with a Wilber-type compost mix With added fertilizer anyway but will also concentrate on applying more compost tea this time.

I desperately want to downsize this year with the number of tomatoes. It would be so much easier to care for fewer and do it right.
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Re: Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

#48

Post: # 28595Unread post Ginger2778
Wed Aug 19, 2020 7:15 am

So Elaine, do you think thats going to work? You being able to downsize? I always say that but....
Does taking care "properly" mean like fungicide use? Somehow, it's easy to talk oneself out of doing that, saying things like, "If I trim off my fungusy leaves I'll rob the plant of energy for the fruit", and "I don't want to spray with anything, because I don't want to use chemicals".
And I find it difficult to scale down it takes so much more discipline than I seem to have. I think you are more disciplined though. ☺
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Re: Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

#49

Post: # 28614Unread post MsCowpea
Wed Aug 19, 2020 3:59 pm

Believe me I am not disciplined at all but I am a million times more than DH when it comes to tomato plants. He even dug out those stunted tomato plants from the lousy potting mix out of the trash. And crammed them in everywhere on his ‘allotment’. I had already reseeded a bunch and bought some as well and we ended up with way too many. By looking after them properly, I am thinking about tying them up, additional fertilizer, some pruning. fungicide sprays, etc. plus keep up with all the rest of the vegetable garden which require lots of work too. Determined to cut back, even 100 or less would be an improvement.

My special Wilber’s compost cover blew off and it got rained on. That is a big NO-NO in Wilber’s book. I am going to use it but there goes my Guinness World Record.
:cry:
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Re: Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

#50

Post: # 28617Unread post Ginger2778
Wed Aug 19, 2020 4:18 pm

MsCowpea wrote:
Wed Aug 19, 2020 3:59 pm
Believe me I am not disciplined at all but I am a million times more than DH when it comes to tomato plants. He even dug out those stunted tomato plants from the lousy potting mix out of the trash. And crammed them in everywhere on his ‘allotment’. I had already reseeded a bunch and bought some as well and we ended up with way too many. By looking after them properly, I am thinking about tying them up, additional fertilizer, some pruning. fungicide sprays, etc. plus keep up with all the rest of the vegetable garden which require lots of work too. Determined to cut back, even 100 or less would be an improvement.

My special Wilber’s compost cover blew off and it got rained on. That is a big NO-NO in Wilber’s book. I am going to use it but there goes my Guinness World Record.
:cry:
Oh crap!
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Re: Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

#51

Post: # 28621Unread post Barb_FL
Wed Aug 19, 2020 4:57 pm

I was so looking forward to seeing you in the Guiness records. Sorry your pile got wet; I would think a little water would actually be good but Wilbur knows best for sure.

Around June early July, I was only going to do a few plants; but once I got everything cleaned up, my attitude changed and I think I will be all in. At least have a plant where all the T-Post already are. I haven't told my husband yet. Since we aren't going anywhere, why not?

I plan to do Dave's pruning on a lot of my plants; and his method as much as possible although doubtful I will do it in an Earthbox.

Hopefully, the dry fertz purchased from AMLeonard will make it a lot less time consuming with the Earthboxes.

I'm going back to elevating all my Root Pouches so air pruning will be on all sides including the bottom.
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Re: Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

#52

Post: # 31858Unread post Barb_FL
Mon Oct 05, 2020 9:28 am

So far I've been almost a complete failure for CW or Dave's method. My plants were so early (duh - I sowed seeds before Sept 1) and had to transplant them in their final containers. Then I didn't want to blame the method if 'other stuff' happened, so I've been just feeding them liquids.

Now, so many of my spots are taken because I've been planting out and keeping the plants further apart or if the spot wasn't good, not using it.

I have been doing the horizontal bamboo sticks; even there the plants have had explosive growth so I have to move them.

I have way more fruit set then I expected at this time of year.

My orchid bee is back, but yesterday I tried a tuning fork but as soon as it touches anything on the plant, it stops vibrating. To me, an electric toothbrush is way easier. My husband had 128 and 256 frequencies. I tried the 256 one.
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Re: Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

#53

Post: # 31946Unread post GoDawgs
Tue Oct 06, 2020 1:49 pm

MsCowpea wrote:
Fri Aug 14, 2020 8:13 pm
I found pieces of fencing I had got at Lowe’s to fence out peacocks.
Took them and hinged 3 of them with electric zip ties. Then braced with a few t-stakes (?) Closed off the front with a shorter piece (to make it easier to fork in the pile ) but progressively raised it up until eventually another fencing piece was put in place.
@MsCowpea, I really like that fencing box you made. Do you remember what kind of fencing that was? It would be much easier to deal with than the circle of field fencing I use.
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Re: Charles Wilber Compost (How to Grow World Record Tomatoes)

#54

Post: # 32507Unread post MsCowpea
Fri Oct 16, 2020 6:59 pm

GoDawgs: You mentioned building your own and I need to do the same as I need my Lowe’s fencing panels back. Wouldn’t be hard and much cheaper. I was just going to build a wood frame and staple on fencing wire and hinge the frames. I found some examples.
DIY compost bins

From Extension UMN
Portable wood and wire composting bin

“Portable wood and wire compost bin
* This unit is very flexible. It works well in small spaces as a holding unit for yard wastes or as a portable turning unit for kitchen and yard wastes.
* The unit is easily movable for turning piles or building a new one. Simply undo the latches, pull the sides apart and move it.”


https://extension.umn.edu/how-manage-so ... res-882310


This one is hinged.
https://www.birdsandblooms.com/gardenin ... mpost-bin/

From: https://www.gardeningchannel.com/diy-co ... s-roundup/

DIY COMPOSTERS / COMPOST BINS
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