[nafex] Fruit trees -- high water table

Road's End Farm organic87 at frontiernet.net
Sat Jan 7 12:06:43 EST 2017

On Jan 7, 2017, at 11:36 AM, Lee Reich wrote:

> Just a short comment on Rivka’s last paragraph. Wood chips are relatively high in carbon with respect to nitrogen, so will temporarily tie up nitrogen — but only if mixed into the soil. Laid on top of the ground, breakdown is gradual, and at the interface of the mulch and the soil. A dynamic equilibrium then exists where tie up of nitrogen is offset by its slow re-release into the soil. This is not just theory; I’ve used wood chips as mulch for decades, always with good results, and have talked to others with similar experiences. The same could even be said for sawdust, which I’ve also occasionally used as mulch.

Thanks for adding that clarification, Lee. As I understand that, that's quite true. I was thinking of the wood (probably chipped) being mixed into the planting holes during planting, and/or being thought of as immediately remediating any soil problems.

On Jan 7, 2017, at 11:57 AM, Steven Covacci wrote:

> Would the effect of ash wood raining the pH
> be permanent, or does this effect dissipate?

Rather like the lime: it can be long-lasting, but will eventually dissipate.

I wouldn't keep applying wood ash to the same small patch year after year -- I once accidentally got the pH way too high in a garden patch that way, years ago. Vary where you apply, and keep an eye on the soil tests -- for potash levels as well as pH. It's unlikely that one household is going to produce enough of the stuff to overload several acres, though.

-- Rivka; Finger Lakes NY, Zone 6A now I think
Fresh-market organic produce, small scale

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