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kubotachick
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 116 illinois/wisconsin
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2004-03-05          78920


Lots of people nowadays are wacko for mulcho...and what is the disgusting appeal that red mulch give...i mean come on...its just ground up pallets (at least around here it is). Dark Hardwood all the way!

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grinder
Join Date: Oct 2003
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2004-03-05          78924


So why are you a kubota chick? ....

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TomG
Join Date: Feb 2002
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2004-03-06          78983


I hear that in the south pine needles are used and there are even rakes and balers for them. It's because wood chips attract termites.

Around here we're knee deep in needles and the thought of buying them or buying equipment to bale them is a little unusual. Don't use mulch myself, I compost leaves and needles along with garbage etc. in a shallow trench--then it's even more disgusting from some perspective I guess. If I didn't use compost it'd be like trying to grow vegetables on a beach. In our post-glacial area we've got a choice between sand and bedrock. Even though I need the stuff, I wish needles would compost faster or there were less of them. My trench turns into a 4' mount for most of the year. ....

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Peters
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2004-03-06          79026


Hey dudette;
Don't you know that California has the mostest on fashion and leads the country in taste and culture?
They have used red wood and red cedar bark mulch for years. I guess the west cost fashion has finally come east, except we have to dye the ground up oak pallets. ....

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kubotachick
Join Date: Mar 2004
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2004-03-06          79083


why am i a kubota chick grinder? well..i go for men that have kubotas...its my thing...and besides what does that have to do with mulch.
I have traveled to the south and it seems that all mulching with pine needles does is make the soil even more acidic, what scence does that make? Derrr! ....

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grinder
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2004-03-07          79096


It has absolutely nothing to do with mulch.
Just curious? ....

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TomG
Join Date: Feb 2002
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2004-03-07          79101


I think mulching mostly has to do with water retention and weed control. Far as I know that's the function, but like most function it gets overtaken by form. A common motivation these days likely has more to do with decoration than function. Serious gardeners around here seem to be growing things in a sea of black plastic, which sure isn't decorative. It probably doesn't change the soil ph either.

True enough about needles and acidity. I use both lime and chem fertilizer to speed up composting. I have to use quite a bit of lime when pine needles are in the pile. ....

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Peters
Join Date: Feb 2002
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2004-03-07          79103


I use pine needles, because its free. I have to rake a couple of truck loads of needles off the lawn every year.
Most of the plants I mulch like the acid, but you need to be careful. ....

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Murf
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2004-03-08          79232


Man, I hope 'Botachick never sees my #6 picture, I might end up with a stalker......LOL.

Seriously, Tom nailed it, it retains moisture while inhibiting weed growth, the fact that the bottom layer is constantly decomposing and adding nutrients to the soil is a bonus.

The latest thing for us is the mulching of the entire area inside the drip line of trees on the golf courses. Probably the biggest reason for doing so is to protect the trees from strees by keeping moisture and nutrients next to the roots. Personally I don't mind, it's better than trucking the stuff away. On an average course up here we end up with about 50 truckloads of wood chips.

Best of luck. ....

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kubotaguy
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 360 Shepherdstown, WV
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2004-03-08          79233


A friend of mine used that red looking mulch and it has been down for several years and it looks as if it is changing color. It looks worse now than it did when he put it down. I'm with the Kubotachic and go hardwood all the way. ....

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Abbeywoods
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 110 New England
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2004-03-08          79248


Nearly all New England source mulch is tub ground/chipper ground indigenous species, it could be almost anything. The better yards amend the shredded/chipped stock with mild boric acid for insect control and add a dye for color. Playground mulch is dictated by the state for size of chip, material, and allowable percent of "other" material, it's usually dye free. Only mulch sold by species name, such as red cedar, cypress, pine, cocoa shell, hemlock, etc. can be sold if the content of "other" material is less than 10%. Pine needle mulch is ideal mulch, but if you worry about the ph, there is nothing wrong with mulching with aggregate, it won't alter your soil ph or produce artillery fungus (which can shoot its spores over twenty feet and cause damage to metal, plastic, and wood surfaces). Regardless of what you use, renew it every spring to eliminate fungus and dye fade. I thank you very mulch. ....

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kubotachick
Join Date: Mar 2004
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2004-03-16          80046


its nice to know there is a kubotaguy out there too...i guess everyone has a match...
Yes, dark hardwood is totally the way to go, even the cypress is unreliable sometimes...but remember, there are great things you can do with a tub grinder and some perserverance...if your really that anti red mulch. ....

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ScooterMagee
Join Date: Jul 2003
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2004-04-08          82468


I bought 10 bags of cedar mulch from Home Depot. Then, thinking that all cedar mulch is created equal, I bought 10 bags from Walmart. Much to my surprise the Walmart stuff was totally different. The Home Depot mulch was chipped, with red and white chips and had that nice cedar-closet smell. The Walmart stuff was shredded, red-brown in color and smelled horrid. In fact the Walmart stuff looked more like cypress, but was clearly marked cedar. The Walmart mulch was 30 cents cheaper per bag, I guess you get what you pay for. ....

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Abbeywoods
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2004-04-08          82475


Hey Scooter, I don't think WalMart even knows what they are selling! So long as people buy it, they sell it. WalMart has been in trouble here in CT on more than one occasion for selling under false representation. ....

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bellaterra
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 22 Brandon, Mississippi
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2004-07-10          90511


I second what Murf said. Depending on the type of mulch will change your soils ph. If you use a Pine bark then of course your ph will head towards the acidic side and if you choose hardwood then the soils leans more toward the neutral or alkaline side. Some plants prefer soil with more acid and will actually suffer if the soil's ph raises much past neutral. I'm a landscape designer/owner and prefer mulch over pine straw as we call it in the south, because as it decomposes from the bottom side it amends and richens the soil, not to mention moisture retention, weed barrier, and cosmetics. There is a HUGE market for Pine Straw bails too. ....

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beckman
Join Date: Oct 2004
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2004-10-22          99031


We have a different use for wood chips or shavings. We are moving our small horse herd to a new barn in Colorado and need to find a smaller scale piece of equipment (preferrably used) that we can use to make wood shavings/chips for bedding. Everything we have found to date is either for larger mulch type chipping or it is very large scale and very $$$

Any suggestions out there? ....

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kubotachick
Join Date: Mar 2004
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2004-11-06          99955


The only concern i have is that all this red dyed mulch is toxic to animals and i can only imagine what it will end op doing to plants. We may be in trouble in a couple years with some freakish plants that got genetically altered due to a wicked dye used in the mulch. Down with Red Mulch ....

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Art White
Join Date: Jan 2000
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2004-11-06          99957


Our town has a mulch that is from wood chips and sludge. They use a 3/4 inch screen and the fine stuff seems to catch to much grass and weed seed. the larger stuff wiorks great when run thru a couple of times and will hold the color for several years and doesn't have enough fine stuff for the weed seed to germinate. I've got to roll mine out now after five years. Anything in the bed of coarse grows great! ....

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kubotachick
Join Date: Mar 2004
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2004-11-06          99962


yeah, i know whenever i want to go cover my ground, sludge is the first thing i think of to use. Hey, and remember when it was cool to mulch your plants in with pea gravel?
....

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
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2004-11-26          101117


Anybody used rubber mulch? My buddy's landscape supply sells it for...better sit down for this...$630-$850 for a 3-yard palletized poly-bag. It's made of recycled rubber tires and surface-dyed---just like chopped up pallets! The amazing thing though is that it looks and almost feels like (rubbery) wood. The cheaper stuff is chunks about the size of pine bark; the expensive stuff has pieces that look like shredded cedar bark. Comes in several colors including dark and light brown, and even blue, red and green. Commercial office buildings and condo complexes like it because they don't have renew it every year. ....

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kubotachick
Join Date: Mar 2004
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2004-11-27          101150


that is the stupidest thing i have ever heard of in my life. I'm guessing it doesn't retain any water or break down into organic matter for the soil. Hey honey, lets go chop up those old tires and throw them in the yard since the garbage man won't take them. Stupid...i guess i like the red stuff more than that ....

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earthwrks
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2004-11-27          101165


kubotachick: okay, now tell us how you REALLY feel---and don't hold back now! Seriously though, no they don't break down (that is their selling point) so you don't have to pay every season to redo them. ....

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kubotachick
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2004-11-27          101169


but yeah, whats the difference between that and throwing some old newpapers down..actually that would be more benificial to the plant. I guess it would be good for large commercial accounts, but not for the regular around the house...i wouldn't think. Those big mulch blowers are really the way to go, cuts time incredibly
....

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earthwrks
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2004-11-27          101173


kabotackick: If you think about it, at least around here, people use small stone/decorative rock in place of mulch. I get a lot of calls from homeowners who hate it after they put it down and want me to remove it because it is so hard to keep the weeds out and keep it looking nice. Some even use a type of stone that actually floats but looks like a smooth walnut shell--not good when the landscaping beds overflow with rain or during high winds! They tell me their neighbors get a little ticked to find the stuff all over their yards. Speaking of mulch blowers--Home Depot contracts someone to mulch their traffic islands---it looks like somebody chewed it all up and spit it out----hey! just like your idea of old newspapers! ....

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kubotachick
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2004-11-27          101174


yeah, i hear ya bro...or those cocoa shells, those stupid things are terrible. You cannot do anything around them. I guess these rubber dingies aren't so bad. And those rocks are terrible, and if you ever have to match up old stones with new stones in new beds its almost impossible.

No harm no foul. ....

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grassgod
Join Date: Apr 2004
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2004-11-28          101192


I sell a few hundred yards of a variety of mulch every year. I lease a 10 acre parcel of land just to store the stuff. I buy it from Maine & Canada via tractor trailer with a walking floor. The area I store my Red cedar is some what close to wetlands. Well, the town found out I was storing it there & tested it. I was also required during this to get the dye ingredients from the supplier. What all this discover was that the dye is food dye! So harmless it couldn't even hurt an earthworm! ....

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duke8444
Join Date: May 2005
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2006-02-23          125015


I am personally done with mulch. Every year I would put down 5-6 yards of mulch to refresh the beds or build some old beds up. Last year, I removed all the mulch, added weed cloth and then stone. It was the best thing I ever did. The beds look great and no mulching this spring. The mulch around the pool beds was nothing but problems and all the concret was getting stained from the mulch. ....

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kthompson
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2006-02-23          125022


Realizing this is an old thread until last post. Sure seems like a lot of them have been hit in last few days.

One point I did not see in any post was fire hazard. My Mom's house caught on fire due to cigar tossed into the pine needle mulch. That was it for the pine straw and hello red dyed mulch!

kt

....

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WillieH
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2006-03-08          125769


kt -
HOLY MOLY! Kind of gives a new comprehension of things when you see someone flick a butt out the window...of any kind - sorry to hear that.

I was sent this by a buddy of mine from the industry. I do not know how much truth there is, but, it sure does make sense and attention should be taken...

Notice from your Home Builder's Association

Please be advised of the following warning and pass along to your friends, fellow builders, landscapers, etc.

Louisiana agricultural dept. web site FYI.

If you use mulch around your house be very careful about buying mulch this year. After the Hurricane in New Orleans many trees were blown over. These trees were then turned into mulch and the state is trying to get rid of tons and tons of this mulch to any state or company who will come and haul it away. So it will be showing up in Home Depot and Lowes at dirt cheap prices with one huge problem; Formosan Termites will be the bonus in many of those bags. New Orleans is one of the few areas in the country were the Formosan Termites has gotten a strong hold and most of the trees blown down were already badly infested with those termites. Now we may have the worst case of transporting a problem to all parts of the country that we have ever had. These termites can eat a house in no time at all and we have no good control against them, so tell your friends that own homes to avoid cheap mulch and know were it came from.

K Dennis

Executive Officer
Marshall County Home Builder's Assoc.



....


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Peters
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2006-03-08          125781


What a couple of rays of sunshine you two are this morning. I hope the concrete and metal will keep me from the Formosa. I guess I should not use my needles as mulch? I burned a lot of them this year to remove some stumps. It is a bit like spreading gasoline. ....

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tinkman
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 17 Eugene, OR
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2006-03-08          125783


One should be careful about accepting as true and passing on stories without first verifying. I've attached a link to a Houston newspaper article addressing the Louisiana mulch scare. Louisiana put mulch on lockdown. The only stuff that may get out is through lawbreakers, which makes it somewhat unlikely that Home Depot or other chains will end up with it. ....


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kthompson
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2006-03-08          125788


Tinkman,

That is good, but did they lock down mulch in the other gulf coast states hit by Katrina that also could have the same problem?

For those of us who have fire ants that came in through New Orleans port many years ago we are not comfortable. No doubt Louisiana is better at keeping mulch in than getting people out.
....

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yooperpete
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2006-03-08          125803


I've always been told that bugs hate Cypress mulch and will go elsewhere. When I do mulch, I do cypress around a house and then go with local stuff around other trees and berms, etc. Michigan has a problem with Emerald Ash borers so you can't transport wood from county to county. Usually you can get as much local stuff as you want free if you load it yourself after a good storm. Many of the local tree service guys want to charge for it, since they can sell it to nurserys. They can also haul it to Flint, MI where they have a wood fired power generator that gives them something for it.

When not doing mulch, I generally choose round smooth stones that we call river rock. It is natural, doesn't stain and doesn't catch as many leaves and other vegetation in the fall. ....

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WillieH
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2006-03-08          125823


kt,
Your comment "No doubt Louisiana is better at keeping mulch in than getting people out", is interesting. With everything (finger pointing, etc) that has come to light with the gazillions of investigations into why things did not work, I hope that the stuff will stay put.

When I was working in northern Georgia some years ago, I had the experience of a personal encounter with Fire Ants. NO MERCY that those little buggers have !!!! WOW....I can still remember the E.R. !

I had gotten some eucalyptus shreaded bark some years ago. It smelled good, and was real soft, and did not have to worry about bugs - it repels them. All of a sudden though, I had a yard full of Kuala bears! (lol)

- Willie H ....

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SG8NUC
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2006-03-08          125826


Down here you can use pine bark. It attracts cockroaches by the 10s of thousands. It is cheap if you like roaches. Do not put it around the edge of the house. Pine straw seems to be the choice for visiually appealing it is far from cheap(unless you like to rake) and does not last as long as other choices. I use and like cypress mulch it will control bugs and has a good halflife. I have never seen fire ants in or around the cupress mulch. If you ever get in a fire ant bed, from then on even in the dark, if you step in anything soft you will take extreme action right then no questions asked. I dont try to kill all of the fire ant mounds they kill alot of bugs, just get rid of the ones that may cause you a threat. ....

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kthompson
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2006-03-08          125834


Willie,
Just how much eucalyptus does it take to attrack one Kuala bear? We probably would only want a pair.


SG,
Fire ants kills a lot of bugs? What kind of bugs? I don't know of any bug that would make me want fire ants.

Really have wondered about ant eater.


If life is going sideways,I can visit here and always get a good chuckle.
....

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SG8NUC
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2006-03-08          125838


I dont have a clue what bugs they eat, they will surly attack us I figured a bug would not stand a chance. I am not going over to the mound to find out. The mounds i save are on the back fourty. What burns my but is when the first ants reach your crotch they signal and all of them attaaaaaack at the same time. What a rush. ....

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WillieH
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2006-03-08          125845


kt -
To be totally honest, I don't know. I put about 15 yards around the place 'cause I got sick and tired of the moles and skunks digging and kicking the "regular" mulch looking for grubs. Everytime I went out in the morning, I could figure on grabbing my steel rake and resetting alot of mulch. So I tried the eucalyptus.

We have a processing plant local to my Father's house that handles all kinds of different media. Then in the springtime, the plant turns around and donates about 150 trailer boxes worth of pallets filled with all kinds of various varieties of stuff - everything from specialized growth enhancers for Rhody's / Azaleas to twenty different types of mulch. I scoffed up as much eucalyptus as I could get.....no more bugs, no more moles, and the neighbors cat disappeared as well! Must've been all the "bears"! LOL


SG8NUC -
Just the rememberance of them little buggers on me, and where they bit is enough to make me get up out of this chair and shake my pants legs! I am hoping that the frost that we have here is what keeps them at bay.
With all due respect, I have witnessed MANY wonderful people and moments during my time in the south, but you can keep the Fire Ants, Thank you very much. lol

- Willie H
....

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kthompson
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2006-03-09          125861


Is there a mulch dogs don't like to plunder in?
....

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SG8NUC
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 579 g
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2006-03-09          125896


Willie

Come on willie dont be like that I'm a nice guy I belive in shareing. How many do you need? I have heard that eucalyptus is an outstanding product I would love to try some. My main problem is Armordillas they will dig a 6" x 8" x 10" deep hole every 5 feet. Thank goodness that they are not crafty and you can walk up on them at Point blank range and dispatch of him with your weapon of choice. They will dig anywhere in anything.

KT
I dont know of any mulch, but there are items that employ velocity that work very well. ....

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wingwiper
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 676
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2006-03-09          125898


Eucalyptus has posionous leaves and maybe its bark and wood are also posionous to smaller critters. That could explain the missing Cat.
Marigolds repel insects as well. So plant Marigolds around your house. ....

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WillieH
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 543 New England
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2006-03-09          125905


Wingwiper -
Yea, your right about the poisonous leaves and such. I realize the eucalyptus is poisonous to many creatures, however so is /are marigolds to many critters, besides the stench that the marigolds give off.
I guess the Kuala bear is about the only creature that can consume the stuff without keeling over.

SG8NUC -
You know what, I have never seen an armadillo in real life. They must be somewhat similar to the mentality of the possum that we have up here - damn stupid things! You can come across the darn things at night, and they'll lay over and either stop and freeze staring at you or simply play dead on their sides. I guess you could say that they are the same short of the armor.

Wait aminute...All this time I have been going on about the Koala Bear, not as I have been writing "kuala". I think I have been thinking of that drink again...KAHLUA...yea that's it....
The Kahlua Bear ! LOL

- Willie H ....

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SG8NUC
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 579 g
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2006-03-09          125906


armadillos are possums on a half shell. I can ship the armadillos with the fire ants we got plenty of each. ....

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