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laying new lawn - mixing wood chips in with soil?


 
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JosephRock
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 11:32 am    Post subject: laying new lawn - mixing wood chips in with soil? Reply with quote

Hello,

(first time post)

I am laying a new lawn with turf this Spring.

At the base of garden is a very large pile of wood chips at the base of garden - remnants from small branches that were put through a wood chipper after fir trees were cut down.

Is it a bad idea to mix these wood chips with the top soil after I rotivate the garden? There is a substantial amount of chips there and my fear is they will take nitrogen from the soil leaving me with patchy grass and mushrooms.

Thanks!



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Kim
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 5:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi and welcome to the forum.

The woodchips would make a fantastic mulch for any shrub, tree or hedge.

As for mixing in with the soil... it is not generally recommended but I think would depend on how much was mixed in. A little would be eaten by worms surprisingly quickly doing no harm at all. There are many variables. Possibly because they are fir chippings they may take longer to break down than what I am used to, but they look small.

If it was me I would use them as a top dressing to any shrub tree or hedge or to make an informal path.

Someone else here may have other ideas?
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Greengage
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 5:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would not mix them for growing a lawn, they will use up a lot of nitrogen in breaking down and if there are spores present you will find lots of "Mushrooms" growing on the new lawn.
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James Kilkelly
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 5:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd avoid doing this, JosephRock, for all the reasons mentioned.
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tippben
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 09, 2015 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not a good idea to mix them into soil. Why were the trees/branches removed? If it wasn't because of disease, they will be an excellent mulch for trees and hedging, also any non-greedy shrubs. That's because they break down with the action of saprophytes and saprovores, like in a woodland. It's a totally different process that normal composting. The mushrooms are an integral part of the process. Many will actually inoculate the growing plants with beneficial fungi (mycorryzal symbiosis). If the chips came from a diseased tree, whether a fungal or viral pathogen, I wouldn't use them anywhere.
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JosephRock
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 12, 2015 12:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks guys for your advice.

This a fabulous forum - so much useful information here!
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Good guy
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2015 9:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Careful! We don't want that lot getting swelled heads!
Seriously, though, it is a great forum. And I haven't heard saprophytes mentioned since O Level Biology back in the 60s (that's 1960s, Tagwex, in case you were asking!). Anyway, now I'm going to have to google them, for revision.
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tagwex
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2015 1:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Why were you still doing your O levels in your forties?
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greengiant
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 5:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If I may jump in and ask a similar question? I plan to lay new turf next week. Most of the top soil that someone else put down (a landscaper that knows ore about hard landscaping than soft) is laden with dried twigs mostly about 1 inch in length. I spent a large portion of the day painstakingly picking out the twigs but there are many, many more and so I stopped brefore I went insane. What I'd like to know is, are there any measures I can take to compensate for any nitrogen that might be taken? I'll be spreading some starter fertiliser in the next couple of days if that info is relevant. Thanks.
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Greengage
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 8:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Get yourself (Hire) a stone raker and rake them into furrows then remove, how big an area are you laying did you not consider stitching in seed very quick
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greengiant
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 9:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The area (my back garden) is only 40sqm / 50sqy. The stone raker sounds very interesting, will definitely look into it. I'm not really familiar with stitching - is it what they do with a tractor on farms for reseeding?! I need the lawn to be up & ready for the summer for my 3 year old, hence the turf! While I'm at it, do you know what type of drainage sand I should ask for in a shop, eg "sharp" sand? Thanks.
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tagwex
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 9:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If its only 40m2 then just rake it by hand. It won't take that long. Save ghe hiring expense.
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