What our Customers say about our Compost


Dear Jay and Folks,

Here is some very interesting yield data comparing no-till to conventional
till broccoli.

Bottom Line:

When you total the head yields with lateral yields, Jay's No-till Compost
and the Fertrell come in at total yield weights of 807.1 grams versus 809
grams for the Fertrell.  Jay's laterals were almost 2 times as big as the
others, however.  

Jay's and the Fertrell were neck and neck for yield.  However, anytime you
can AVERAGE 1.7 pounds per plant, and you are 250 times cheaper than
Fertrell liquid, we might want to consider using this product.  That's
right, Jays product is 250 times cheaper than liquid Fertrell and 50 times
cheaper than Harmony 5-5-3.

I will testify to this in court if need be.


Richard C. McDonald, Ph.D.
Symbiont Biological Pest Management
194 Shull's Hollar
Sugar Grove, NC 28679
(828) 297-BUUG (2884) Phone

Jay -

I wanted to follow up regarding the compost you applied to my yard. When I moved in to my newly-built house, the yard consisted of bare areas interspersed with areas of sparse, patchy new rye grass struggling to grow in fill-dirt and red clay. You came over and applied a generous layer of compost and reseeded the yard and a few weeks later it was almost unrecognizable. It grew so quickly that my husband (then-fiance), who had previously worked in landscaping, couldn't believe that the thick, lush growth was straight from seed.

For the next two years, the growth rate was unbelievable, in spite of reduced rainfall. My husband had to mow the yard about every three days, especially in the front where the compost was spread the most thickly. Even now, after three years, the grass is thick and lush and the growth rate is still consistent and strong, although it has slowed to a normal pace (much to my husband's relief!).

My neighbor has been struggling to grow grass in sections of his yard for some time now, and just recently approached me to find out how we got our grass to grow so quickly back when we built, and how we kept it looking so thick and green year after year. He couldn't believe we got the results we did from simply applying a thick layer of compost and seed and sitting back to watch it grow (he'll be calling you shortly, I'm sure). I'm looking forward to starting a small garden this year and can't wait to see the results I get using your compost with my herbs, vegetables, and flowers!

With thanks,

Kelly Parsons Melton

Hey Jay,

I wanted to say a big THANK YOU for your tireless efforts to create  
the best compost possible.  As a new gardener to the mountains, with  
a new constructions site, I count myself very lucky to have gotten  
your name as a referral to improve my hard clay problem.  We are  
still using a pick ax to dig our garden holes, and we work your  
compost into them and I have one of the prettiest gardens up here.  
My perennals are thriving.

I started my first real vegetable garden in my life and can't believe  
how much it has produced.  People ask me why I planted so many  
cucumber plants, as I keep giving huge cucumbers away and I tell them  
I only planted a few plants.

The very best thing is the weeping red bud I planted as the magical  
center of my flower garden.  Because it was packed in a huge ugly  
ball of clay, all the leaves fell off and the branches turned  
brittle. My tree looked dead by the first of June.  You came over and  
dug it out,  got rid of that nasty clay and replanted it into your  
life giving compost.  We waited and prayed.  Others all told me it  
was dead and to give up.  I couldn't give up as I wanted it to live  
so badly and yesterday, the last day of July, I found a tiny new  
branch on the lower part of the trunk!!!!  All thanks to your love of  
nature and your genius in creating such a life giving mixture.  I  
will always be grateful.

Jody Bargerstock
222 Morning Glory Trail
Deep Gap, NC 28618



July 17, 2007

To Whom It May Concern:

I am Dr. Charla Rae Armitage. My PhD is from Oklahoma State University in Plant Pathology (the study of plant diseases) with an emphasis in epidemiology (the study of the spread of disease). I am also an avid gardener. I have been using Jay Carter’s (Rockwater Farms) compost in my gardens for 8 years and, over the years, have advised innumerable people to do the same. In all of this time, I have seen no evidence that Jay’s compost was ever contaminated with plant pathogens. (This can not be said of bagged compost or soil mix.) In fact, I have circumstantial evidence that Jay’s compost may suppress Phytophthora infestans, a particularly aggressive water mold. I can also say that I have observed a direct correlation between the amount of Jay’s compost given to a plant and that plant’s health.

Please contact me if you have any questions. My phone number is 336.877.4988.


Charla Ray Armitage, PhD. 


Thursday, July 05, 2007

Mr. Carter:

Your compost literally takes the work out of gardening!  I planted my
multiple herb beds and two vegetable beds (beans, tomatoes, summer
squash, green peppers) with the aid of your patented compost.  I have
leaves on my squash plants that measure nearly 3 feet across!  Each of
the 9 plants are approximately 4.5 feet tall and contain about a dozen
squash per plant!  No kidding.  The tomatoes are amazing, as well.  
There's 11 different varieties and they've been in the ground
approximately 30 days; each plant is about 4 feet tall and contain about

8 to 14 tomatoes per plant.  I can't harvest my herbs fast enough.  I
had to buy one of those vacuum-sealing machines to keep up with them.  
Thank you so-o-o much for your wonderful product.  If every gardener
used your compost, we'd all have the biggest, best vegetables and herbs
available.  The quality is actually beyond belief.  If I hadn't seen it
with my own eyes, I wouldn't have believed it.

Suzanne Smith


"I use Rockwater Farms Compost for worm bedding. It has all the qualities that I am looking for - high in organic matter, dark in color, full of nutrients, and very little clay and sand. I highly recommend this compost for growing worms!"

Alan Hanson
Blue Ridge Vermiculture





Jeanette and I want to thank you for helping us out.  We planted our tomatoes and two flats of a special type of pepper that Jeanette's grandfather used to love.  All of the plants were doing poorly in the horse manure mixture that we bought from a local landscape supplier.  The pale color and leaf curl were signs of poor nitrogen content in the manure.  After we called you and placed your compost around the plants, they started looking better in two days.  Now, two weeks later, all of the plants are green and strong.  As you know, we have been using the compost to plant almost everything- from flowers to shrubs and trees.  We have lost only a couple of plants over the past year, mostly due to the high winds we had this past winter.  We have recommended your compost to everyone who asks.  Thanks again for helping save this year's garden.

Best regards,

Eric Grimes


To whom it may concern:

I have had occasion over the past year to use compost from Rockwater Farms,
ie. Jay Carter, for my own garden and for a community garden. I have found it
to be of the highest quality, very friable, and an important   amendment to the
poor and rocky soil often found in the Western Watauga County area, turning
it to arable land. It is also a good value for the price charged. As a botanist
(BS, UNCC, 1982, additional horticultural studies CPCC, 1983), I would highly
recommend Rockwater Farms' product to any hobbyist or professional gardener.
Additionally, I feel that Mr. Carter performs an important service to the
citizens of Watauga County by composting items that would otherwise be added to
our already overflowing landfill.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Marsha Walpole

PO Box 294
Sugar Grove, NC 28679


Dear Jay,

Your compost has turned my new yard from a hard packed construction site to a thriving oasis - in just two years!  As an avid gardener moving here from northern California, my heart sank when I realized that my beautiful new home was surrounded by hard packed clay.  A neighbor and a local nursery suggested that I try your compost, so I began mounding it and working it into the soil.

I planted several cover crops in the front yard on your compost. In other spots, I simply mounded the compost and planted in the mounds.  Now I have perennials, annuals, shrubs and vegetables - and worms!

You have always answered my calls promptly and arrived with your truck within a day of my calls.  Many thanks for your dedication to building soil.


Carol Hancock
Brightwood Community
Elk Creek Road



"Stuff just takes off in it. Unless you're blessed with really good soil up here in the mountains, compost is indispensable... and Jay's is the best I've ever run across."

Tom Normand - Vilas

Mr. Normand's gerdening expertise is recognized by friends and professionals. His Bethesda, Maryland garden was featured in the June 2000 issue of Better Homes & Gardens.


Whenever we take a landscaping job that needs compost, our choice is Rockwater Farms. Add that to the soil and we don't need to add anything for years!"

Danielle Stewart - The Mustard Seed Market


Your compost is a magic elixir.  I've been making roughly 200 gallons of potting soil every May, using equal parts Rockwater Farms compost, peat moss, and pearlite, and we've never had such success with our container gardening! ... including several rare species of trees (Japanese maples, among others).
I've used your compost on my vegetable garden now for a couple of years, and you won't see any yellowing of leaves, even after the extensive rains we've had.  Growth is remarkable and consistent.
One of our newest (and rarest) acquisitons is a Franklinia tree.  Planted about a month ago in a good base of your compost, this American native (a cousin of the camelia) has already taken off with two to three inches of new growth.  The tree is a native of Georgia river banks.  Your compost obviously does a pretty good job of mimicking the richness of an ancient delta. 
We're so fortunate to have you in the neighborhood!
Jerry & Pam Williamson

Just wanted to send you a short note and say how pleased we are with the compost you delivered. Any plant or bed that has been dressed with the material has really sprung to life and looks as healthy as a plant could possibly be. The material is easy to work with and really seems to be balanced with the nutrient analysis you provided.
I am going to expand applications to my vegetable garden and orchard and I'm sure will be amazed with the results. Most of what I grow is in intensive beds and this material seems to be well suited for maximizing yield in a concentrated area. Worth every penny!!
I will probably get more in the fall.
Rob and Dell Slack

Dear Jay,

I wanted to drop this note and tell you how impressed I am of the quality of your compost. It has all the traits that allow me to grow great vegetable gardens and awesome flowers. The economic
consideration is what turned me to your product. As most soils in NC, the Mountains upland soils need amendments to provide for plant growth and vigor. With out getting into the details your product is superior in both cost effectiveness and quality to any bagged product
carried by national chains.

Derek Goddard