Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Too much mulch?  (Read 3828 times)

whitby_sam

  • Joined Feb 2008
Too much mulch?
« on: March 15, 2008, 01:39:57 am »
I'm afraid I got a bit over-enthusiastic with the mulching machine last summer and covered what WAS going to be my veg patch with loads and loads of chippings. I hoped these would've not only kept the nettles at bay but rotted down by now. Unfortunately this hasn't happened, my rotorvator is of no use and digging it over seems a little pointless now I've re-located so I'm putting topsoil (spare from the excavation for my new oil tank) and fresh grass clippings on in the hope that'll help thinga along a bit. Any other tips or is there really no substitute for good old-fashioned digging? (My back's hurting already LOL!)

Dan

  • The Accidental Smallholder
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  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Carnoustie, Angus
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Re: Too much mulch?
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2008, 08:32:42 pm »
Don't use wood chippings! Apart from the fact that they take aaagggggeees to rot down (4-6 years), and as they do so they reduce the nitrogen levels in the soil and inhibit seed germination. Don't know the science behind it, just remember reading it in lots of places when we were deciding what to bed our hens on.

If you can get hold of it the best thing is grass that's been through the stomachs of a cow or a horse - there's not much better for upping the level of humus in your soil than manure, preferably well-rotted. If you're sowing seeds direct it needs to be worked in to the soil otherwise it will smother them, but if you're planting out seedlings leave it on top as a mulch - it's not too late at this time of year and the worms will drag it down through the topsoil as the season progresses.

whitby_sam

  • Joined Feb 2008
Re: Too much mulch?
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2008, 08:55:45 pm »
Its about 50/50 wood and other waste.

 

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