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Elsa S. Sánchez, Ermita Hernández, Mark L. Gleason, Jean C. Batzer, Mark A. Williams, Timothy Coolong, and Ricardo Bessin

( Clark et al., 1999 ; Pimentel et al., 2005 ), in part because nutrient sources generated on the farm, such as compost, release nutrients slowly. Nutrient availability is also unpredictable; for example, N mineralization rates depend on soil temperature

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Paige L. Herring, Abbey C. Noah, and Helen T. Kraus

, providing no nutrients as media, and is acidic. As a result, much research has focused on alternative resources for peat in the greenhouse industry ( Abad et al., 2001 ; Ostos et al., 2008 ; Raviv et al., 1998 ). Composts have also proved to suppress soil

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Leonor F.S. Leandro, Lisa M. Ferguson, Frank J. Louws, and Gina E. Fernandez

growers, including those who desire to implement organic systems, have expressed interest in management systems that are not dependent on chemical soil fumigation but rely on biologically based approaches, such as the use of cover crops and compost

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Kristin L. Getter and Dale W. Rozeboom

make peat more costly than local substrates due to long distance transportation. For this, and other reasons, recent research has focused on peat alternatives or extenders. Such products have included composted dairy manure ( Shober et al., 2010 , 2011

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Nikolaos Ntoulas, Panayiotis A. Nektarios, Thomais-Evelina Kapsali, Maria-Pinelopi Kaltsidi, Liebao Han, and Shuxia Yin

., 2006 ), heat-expanded slate ( Olszewski et al., 2010 ), Pum ( Ntoulas et al., 2012 , 2013b ), and lava ( Nektarios et al., 2003 ; Tsiotsiopoulou et al., 2003 ). Organic substances, such as peat and composts, have also been used, but at a smaller

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Annette S. Bucher and Manfred K. Schenk

We thank the Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt and the Deutsche Kompost Handelsgesellschaft for financial support. Composts were prepared by PlanCoTec, Witzenhausen, Germany. The cost of publishing this paper was defrayed in part by the payment of page

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Bernadine C. Strik, Amanda Vance, David R. Bryla, and Dan M. Sullivan

., 2003b ; Strik et al., 2017a ; Williamson et al., 2006 ), which may affect soil properties and nutrient availability. Growers are inclined to use plant or animal-based composts in organic production systems. Compost can release 3% to 10% of total N for

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Joseph G. Masabni and S. Alan Walters

proper soil preparation and plant establishment, and reduced pesticide, water, and fertilizer inputs. The protocol developed for Earth-Kind ® vegetable production includes: 1) an annual soil test; 2) incorporating a 4 to 6-inch layer of compost before

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Ajay Nair, Mathieu Ngouajio, and John Biernbaum

). Growers often design their own mixes using compost and other organic amendments. Organic growers largely depend on compost to manage nutrient requirements of growing transplants. Incorporation of large proportions of compost in the growing medium is not

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Robert R. Tripepi, Mary W. George, K. Amanda Linskey, John E. Lloyd, and Jennifer L. Van Wagoner

fertilizer spike (113 g) inserted into the root ball in 2002 or one Ross Gro-Stake (Eko Compost, Missoula, MT) 10N–4.3P–8.3K Evergreen fertilizer spike (113 g) per ball in 2003 with a spike inserted at the outer edge of the ball, and mulch mixed 1:1 (by