Which is best manure for garden?

Horse, cow, goat or chicken? I am wondering if using the litter from my chicken coop is good to put on my compost pile or not I'm getting ready to till my garden for spring and I am wondering which would be the best manure to use cow? goat? horse? or chicken?
q which is best manure for garden, gardening, homesteading, plant care, One of my chickens
One of my chickens
  24 answers
  • Lisa House Lisa House on Feb 21, 2016
    Rabbit! It's the only one you can apply directly and not have to worry about burning any planting seeds. You can also check with your local waste water treatment plant and see about getting the dry leftover from their tanks...works great, can be applied directly, and you will get free volunteer tomato plants...the seeds are digested by our bodies and they are not killed by the separation process.

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    • Lisa House Lisa House on Feb 26, 2016
      It's called sludge, it's what's left of the solids when the water is removed. It is treated, spread out to dry, then whatever each city chooses to do with it. My dad would bring it home from work. It's very safe, not smelly, it has been thru the treatment stages...I would rather use this than raw animal manure any day.

  • I love composted horse manure. Do not use fresh manure because you will burn and kill your plants. Chicken manure can be use but it is hotter than other manures because it has a lot more nitrogen. Put chicken manure in your compost pile for a year before using. Horse manure is usually great to use within 6 months and it can be put in its own pile to compost. but any manure you use has to be composted or 'sitting' around for at least 6 months. good luck!

  • Sue c. Sue c. on Feb 21, 2016
    I have Speckled Sussex too. I pet the manure in a composter. It heats up the other compost materials fast. Three weeks and it is siftable/usable. I have used horse/cow as well-same system. Never had any burn problems and compost adds and develops nutrients.

  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Feb 21, 2016
    Just for the record manure needs to cure before it goes into the gardens as it will do more harm then good.I would compost this separately and let it cure over a long period of time.

  • Shari Shari on Feb 21, 2016
    We have a horse farm and, with 22 stalls that get cleaned out daily, manure adds up fast so we give it away for free via an ad on Craigslist. We have many repeat customers who swear our horse manure is better than any other manure they have ever used. We've got people who have access to chickens and cattle, but still come to us because they prefer our horse manure. Although we don't use much of it ourselves, I will say I have been able to keep some potted plants on my porch, a few flower beds and some newly planted trees alive and doing well with it, even though I have never, ever had a green thumb. You don't necessarily have to wait a long time to use horse manure. The warmer the climate, the faster horse manure breaks down, plus if it is turned frequently, that speeds up the composting process. My husband turns the pile usually once every week or so with the tractor and since we're in Florida where our winters are mild and our summers are hot, hot, hot, our manure is typically safe and ready to apply to lawns, gardens and flower beds within 30 days. I actually even added it to a flower bed while it was still lumpy (not completely composted) and it was fine. It was a little stinky still but it did not harm the newly planted flowers. They loved it and took off growing like weeds!

  • Carole Carole on Feb 22, 2016
    Chicken manure is stronger in nitrogen than cow manure. Both have to age before you can apply to gardens though.

  • Bryan Bogus Bryan Bogus on Feb 22, 2016
    Worm castings.

    • Catherine Smith Catherine Smith on Feb 22, 2016
      @Bryan Bogus It's the best :) But ya gotta work with what you have available. Not everyone is a vermicomposter. I know, strange those folks. LOL

  • Kathy Kathy on Feb 22, 2016
    Chicken manure will also make the veggies taste hot.

  • Shawn Brockhoff Maxwell Shawn Brockhoff Maxwell on Feb 22, 2016
    Compost the manure to get rid of plant seeds, parasites, etc. Will also allow nitrogen to neutralize in the chicken manure (the hottest of those listed) which can kill your plants.

  • Leonie Wetzlar Leonie Wetzlar on Feb 22, 2016
    I put the chicken manure in a bucket with water and let it sit covered for two weeks, the liquid makes great liquid fertiliser and the sediment goes on the compost, It is too strong to go straight on the garden or the compost. I mix all other manures into my compost system and the worms make the goodness available to the plants a lot quicker than if you put the manure straight into your beds.

  • Horse manure is great if you burn it.. it has hay shavings etc in it.. and by burning it all the nitrogen etc is cooked out.. just like using fireplace ash... on roses.. we use it on our pecan trees each yr..

  • Catherine Smith Catherine Smith on Feb 22, 2016
    Word to the wise, guys. If you are getting your manure from another source, etc. Such as horse or cow manure, do ask some questions about their graze. Many farmers/ranchers use herbicides on their pasture. You do NOT want that manure as a compost pile does not get hot enough to effect a herbicides which will kill or stunt your plants.

  • Wendy Wendy on Feb 22, 2016
    For me chicken manure is the best. We used it on our garden every fall. In the spring it was worked in and then we planted. Our crops we great! We would also let the chickens in the garden to eat all the bugs and other garden pests aftdr the plants were about 4 inche's tall. We never had any damage from the pests nor did the chickens bother the plants. Wonderful memories which I hope to put into practice soon.

  • Julie Marble-White Julie Marble-White on Feb 22, 2016
    We give away our alpaca poop and, it's suppose to be almost perfect for putting directly on your garden. There is info online and probably an alpaca farm nearby.

  • Nancy Flemming Nancy Flemming on Feb 22, 2016
    Chicken or pig manure are the best

  • Susan Rutter Susan Rutter on Feb 22, 2016
    Here in Canada the cheapest is sheep manure. Very effective on.

  • Janie Janie on Feb 22, 2016
    They say that horse is the best because it doesn't burn.

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    • Pamela Scruggs Pamela Scruggs on Mar 13, 2016
      CycoSue (that's a cool name :).. yeah that is the overwhelming notion that I have gotten from this post and some people have said if you get the Aged horse manure from the bottom of the pile that's been sitting for a couple of years the weed seeds will have died

  • NancyMaria NancyMaria on Feb 22, 2016
    As well as using the chicken waste, I use shreded paper as nesting material and that works great for composting too. But with any manure, it better absorable, easier to work with and less ordoress if you mix it with grass etc and let nature cook it down to mulch.

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    • Pamela Scruggs Pamela Scruggs on Mar 02, 2016
      Some people are saying that the horse manure has weed seeds in it the last thing I need is more weeds in my garden but who knows. I already Compost my chicken manure and I'm trying to find some rabbit manure but as yet have had no luck in Charleston South Carolina

  • Cyndi Urano Cyndi Urano on Feb 23, 2016
    rabbit manure is also good. the pebble manure rabbit, sheep, goat, can go directly into the soil. others should be composted to help weed weed control and hotness. this is not to say that you could not compost all manure in with your compost pile. i am not sure about chicken manure but i do know my grandfather would use it directly in the garden however he did have access to tons of water and also had sandy soil

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    • Pamela Scruggs Pamela Scruggs on Mar 02, 2016
      I do use my shredded paper and grass and leaves mulch from my lawn mower in my chicken coop and I put it all in my compost pile I haven't had any luck finding any rabbit manure for sale or for give away here in South Carolina near Charleston. The soil here is very sandy and I hear that it has to really be amended a lot so thanks for your reply

  • Judith Judith on Feb 24, 2016
    Just make sure that whatever fetilizer you choose to use that you let it mature or it will burn anything you try to plant in it !

  • Ellen Ellen on Feb 24, 2016
    Chicken manure is very high in nitrogen (a good thing!), and very potent. Leaving it to age and dry out the uric acid for a month or so will make it safe to use without burning your plants.

  • Harriet Mc Farlane Harriet Mc Farlane on Mar 13, 2016
    I rake up what grass clippings the lawn service leave's on the lawn near my garden and use it for mulch around my plants.

    • Pamela Scruggs Pamela Scruggs on Mar 13, 2016
      Won't that have grass seeds in it that could sprout my goodness I surely don't need any more to weed out of the garden... do you see much grass growing or does it work for you?

  • Judith Judith on Mar 13, 2016
    If you plan on using manure from Poultry or Animals like Horses or Cows you need to know that the acid content needs to mature so it doesn't burn you plants roots or burn your seeds you are planning to plant in it. I usually leave the manure a year to mature in a corner of my garden then I use it next planting season and all is well then. Hope that helps.

  • Harriet Mc Farlane Harriet Mc Farlane on Mar 14, 2016
    The grass clippings are what is left from the lawn mower don't have seeds in. It is just cut off grass; and works well for a mulch, keeping weed down and moisture in the ground.