Sawdust for garden mulch?: Flowers Shrubs Garden  -- Landscape Discussion Forum and Review Sawdust for garden mulch?: Flowers Shrubs Garden -- Landscape Discussion Forum

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 01-23-2007, 12:16 Post: 139069
hardwood

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 Sawdust for garden mulch?

Since I'm going back into furniture manufacturing on a limited basis and the wife want's a garden why not sawdust for mulch? I'm aware that some kind is toxic to a horse, but I know nothing about a horse either. Thanks, Frank.






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 01-23-2007, 12:22 Post: 139071
Murf

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 Sawdust for garden mulch?

Frank, sawdust makes excellent compost, and in very small quantities even makes a good soil amendment, but as a mulch it's a poor choice, mostly because it attracts insects, and it actually encourages propogation of weeds by holding moisture at the surface and acting as a rooting medium. The weeds can actually grow i sawdust itself.

Weed control is one of the principle roles of mulch.

However, if you compost that sawdust properly, including Ph balancing it as it brews, maybe add in some raw manure as you go, you will definitely be her hero!!

We use a LOT of composted sawdust and duck manure from a local commercial duck producer. You can get rocks to grow in that stuff!! Wink yeah right

Best of luck.







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 01-23-2007, 14:01 Post: 139075
earthwrks

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 Sawdust for garden mulch?

I'm with Murf on all his points (not just the one on his head Smile )

Back in the '70's we were organic farmers and sawdust was an excellent media for compost. Dad was President of the organic gardening club and a cabinet maker--so you do the math. We sold earthworms by the gallon. Saw dust was used for the worm beds along with leaf mold (compost) and manure. The worms along with bacteria would break it down in a very short time---like a week or so. The ladybugs we bought and sold came in boxes with wood shavings. They didn't last long enough to feed 'em. We sold praying mantis too by the thousands.

I'd be careful about spreading sawdust wholesale on the flower beds as a soil amendment or mulch though unless you know what it is. I've heard that walnut can kill anything it touches. Not sure if that is the roots and/or the tree trunk. I'd make compost with it first then spread/mix it.

I'd think twice about using dust as mulch though as some insects use it to build nests like wasps, hornets, etc. and probably rodents too. It's like pre-cut and pre-chewed building material for them---hot d-a-w-g!!! Like manna from Heaven!

Murf: Did you ever make "manure tea"?






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 01-23-2007, 14:44 Post: 139080
Murf

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 Sawdust for garden mulch?

EW, yup, we sure do, LOTS of it.

As they say in the newspaper business.... Read all about it!!

Best of luck.






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 01-23-2007, 15:45 Post: 139085
SG8NUC



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 Sawdust for garden mulch?

I am not sure of your question, it was answered to use the sawdust as a medium for compost this is a very good use. My next door neighbor has horses and only uses sawdust ( wood chips) for his stalls. I get all he has when he cleans the stalls it makes the best compost.

Your question was to use the sawdust from your furniture making as a mulch. The dust from fine sawblades dumped around plants will not let water pass through and rob the soil of needed minerials. Over time it will break down. it would be best to compost it first. Mix leaves, grass clippings, your sawdust,garden items, kitchen waste (no meats,) shreaded paper, manure,if you can shread the items first will hasten the event. water it, turn it, and in 6 months you will have great compost. As MURF says weeds will grow to the sawdust






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 01-23-2007, 18:17 Post: 139094
hardwood

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 Sawdust for garden mulch?

Thanks ro all the info. at the old plant we probably generated a garbage can full of mixed dust, plainer shavings, etc. in a day's run. it was sucked thru a central collection system and blew out a spout onto a pile in the yard. If left undisturbed till spring a winters worth of sawdust got pretty hot and steamy in the center and it seemed to turn into kind of a dark colored mulch like material, I used to take the loader and haul it out in the field to dispose of it. The new "Mini Plant" will probably produce a garbage can per week thru a bag collection system, so maybe if I just haul it out to the sand hill and pile it up it would be good for the 08 garden. I've got a neighbor who always has nice clean oat straw for sale, so maybe a dozen bales would be a good choice. Frank.






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 01-23-2007, 19:01 Post: 139098
earthwrks

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 Sawdust for garden mulch?

Frank I assume you mean using oat straw for mulch?
If so, that won't work unless you pile it on 10" deep or more. Only the strong weeds will thrive. The nature of straw is that it lite and airy. That's good if you're using as ground cover when planting grass seed--we use it to slow erosion if rain is coming after planting and/or for shade in the summer sun to help it germinate. The grass grows right up through if it's 6 inches thick or more. It will rapidly degrade and you can hardly see it a few months later once the grass has come up.






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 01-23-2007, 19:11 Post: 139100
hardwood

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 Sawdust for garden mulch?

EW; I remember my Dad using oat straw for mulch after the garden plants got taller than a bale slab was thick. He of course had to hoe till the things got that big. He never tore the bale slabs apart, he just laid them side by side, end to end like you were laying bricks in a street. That was a long time ago but as I remember it worked quite well. An aunt of mine used to spread news papere a few layers deep then put just enough soil on them to keep them from blowing away, that did'nt seem to work very good, the paper got tore and the weeds came anyway. Frank.






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 01-24-2007, 10:08 Post: 139131
Murf

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 Sawdust for garden mulch?

Frank, if you can spare some timbers or something and make a 3 sided box, even if only out of pallets stood on end,
so as to hold the material into a tighter pile, it will compost a lot faster.

If you can add a little 'hot stuff' such as a bucket load or two of fresh manure from a neighbouring farm it will also help a lot. As will turning it every week or so will it simmers along. If you use the FEL to carry the fresh sawdust out, just stick the bucket down in and roll the pile over while you're there.

We use very large interlocking concrete blocks stacked up on a poured slab to make it easy, but we also make a lot of it, so it matters in our case.

If properly composted you can have it ready to use in as little as a few months under the right conditions.

Maybe in a harsh winter an old tarp thrown over it might not hurt either.

Best of luck.






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 01-24-2007, 17:04 Post: 139151
kthompson



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 Sawdust for garden mulch?

hardwood, realize you asked about saw dust but the newspaper will work if you put it down several layers thick. There is a lot of black plastic used in my part of the world for garden mulch. I like the solid one better than the woven for flower beds. It will absord the heat and kill weed seeds. Be sure to have drain holes in it. The best way I found was before unfolding use a pitch fork. You don't need a lot, while still folded ever foot of so will give you plenty. It also holds the moisture great. You do have to use something to hold it down. Something true in all mulches I guess, some animals like living under or in them. Man, makes me want to get the garden ready!






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Discussion Boards > Active Subjects > Messages as Posted > Flowers Shrubs Garden Forum

Thread 139069 Filter by Poster:
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