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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Was wondering if putting wood chips in the rows of the garden or around the plants could help keep weeds down. Have heard of some doing this but would like some opinions here. We have a chance to borrow a large chipper. Our neighbor is taking down a large number of trees on his ditch line. Mostly oak and cherry, but also some cottonwood. Right now we plan on using some for landscaping but if it would be benificial for the garden we'll drop a few loads close by it.
 

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Never done it but would think you would need to remove before turning over would mke the soil a little acidic. Black plastis or straw or old rotten hay works good.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thats part of what I was wondering. The garden will be pretty good sized next year so wasn't really wanting to mess with the plastic.
Would the hay have to be picked up as well if that was used??
 

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petra79 said:
Thats part of what I was wondering. The garden will be pretty good sized next year so wasn't really wanting to mess with the plastic.
Would the hay have to be picked up as well if that was used??
If you can find some that is already starting to decay probably not. It will decompose. Straw Yes in my area will make the ground hard. Doesn't decompose well here. Guess like everything depends on your soil.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Even though we have internet to help in research, its funny how one page says things are fine and the next expert says don't do it??? Some sites have said ALL wood chips rob the soil of nitrogen and make the acidity levels high. Others say mainly Pine chips make it high. Thats why I came here to hear from those who may have had a first hand experience.
I have seen where straw will make the ground a lil tougher so I don't use that. If hay will work I can pick up a large bale and break it open and lay on the ground for a season. Then use it the next year.
Just wanting to learn before I learn the hard way.
I appreciate the input sir. The soil in the area we will use next year appears to be a good black dirt. It is next to a marshy area so it holds moisture good.
 

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Wood chips would make you garden look good until the weeds started poking up through it. Unless you put a barrier under it like the plastic or newspaper.
Newspaper about five or six sheets thick works good if you cover it lightly with dirt to keep it from blowing away. In your sandy soil I don't know how fast
the paper or wood would take to deteriorate. Here the newspaper is fertilizer by the next Spring, but wood chips take a few years to rot away. ;)
Don't use hay unless you want to start a hayfield.
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Ah, you remembered my sandy soil. Funny but everything here is sand - - except - - a small 2+ acre section next to the marshy area. Its a rich black dirt which is where we will plant.
Guess I'm lookin for an easier way for weed control than having to get on my hands and knees to put some type of material down. Guess it don't hurt to ask. Not even sure how bad the weeds will get. We'll be planting in an area that has been farm land for many years. I know these area's still get weeds but not as bad as what we had last year. Eventually the rest of the field might end up as a hay field but not next year.
 

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Wood chips work good here. They do use up nitrogen to decompose. Take a couple years until all broken down. When you work them in the next year all is good. What I really like to do is set them in piles to break down some and use them the next year. I don't like big chips as they take longer. Another good thing is to chip them when they have leaves, this makes them break down quicker. All this makes the soil better, just add some nitrogen or plow down covercrops. Or mix all your compostable materials together, leaves, chips and grass, compost and use that as weed barrier....James
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I did read where the larger the chips, the longer to decompose which makes sense. What if besides letting them sit to start this process that I run them through a small shredder after the large chipper. By breaking the pieces smaller they should decompose quicker and use up less nitrogen??? Maybe a combination of this and newspaper??
Really appreciate all the info coming in so far.
 

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i used to put wood chip between the house and shop, didnt realy matter much if they was big or lil chips. only lasted a couple years. old convayor belting between the garden rows works great for weed control. then at the end of the year just wash and dry them roll up and throw in the shed
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
wizzard said:
i used to put wood chip between the house and shop, didnt realy matter much if they was big or lil chips. only lasted a couple years. old convayor belting between the garden rows works great for weed control. then at the end of the year just wash and dry them roll up and throw in the shed
Got a few belts you want to drop off here????????? Bet that would work nice.
 

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The only weed control I have ever foung worth a hoot is a tiller,hoe and a little sweat!!!! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
Besides Colin didn't move out did he :?: :?: :? :? :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
 

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Stephenscity said:
The only weed control I have ever found worth a hoot is a tiller,hoe and a little sweat!!!! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
And a new spot takes at least three years to tame. ;)
Mine will be going on it's second. :cool:
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
BigDaveinKY said:
Stephenscity said:
The only weed control I have ever found worth a hoot is a tiller,hoe and a little sweat!!!! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
And a new spot takes at least three years to tame. ;)
Mine will be going on it's second. :cool:
First garden (cut in sod in yard) took more than what Mike used. We used a tiller, weed wacker and a push mower. Oh yea, and ALOT of sweat :lol: :lol:
We're going to be using a section of our farm field that has been farmed for many years so like I said the weeds shouldn't be too bad but who knows. Just trying to plan ahead and learn a bit as I go.

Oh, Mike - - Colin is still here so I still have a camera man (me) :eek: :lol:
 

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petra79 said:
BigDaveinKY said:
Stephenscity said:
The only weed control I have ever found worth a hoot is a tiller,hoe and a little sweat!!!! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
And a new spot takes at least three years to tame. ;)
Mine will be going on it's second. :cool:
First garden (cut in sod in yard) took more than what Steve used. We used a tiller, weed wacker and a push mower. Oh yea, and ALOT of sweat :lol: :lol:
We're going to be using a section of our farm field that has been farmed for many years so like I said the weeds shouldn't be too bad but who knows. Just trying to plan ahead and learn a bit as I go.

Oh, Steve - - Colin is still here so I still have a camera man (me) :eek: :lol:
Who's Steve :eek: :eek: :? :? :? :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
 
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Stephenscity said:
Who's Steve :eek: :eek: :? :? :? :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
Your evil twin brother that keeps makin me call you Steve :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :lol: :lol: :lol:
Maybe you should change your user name to "Mikecity"
 

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petra79 said:
Even though we have internet to help in research, its funny how one page says things are fine and the next expert says don't do it??? Some sites have said ALL wood chips rob the soil of nitrogen and make the acidity levels high. Others say mainly Pine chips make it high. Thats why I came here to hear from those who may have had a first hand experience.
I have seen where straw will make the ground a lil tougher so I don't use that. If hay will work I can pick up a large bale and break it open and lay on the ground for a season. Then use it the next year.
Just wanting to learn before I learn the hard way.
I appreciate the input sir. The soil in the area we will use next year appears to be a good black dirt. It is next to a marshy area so it holds moisture good.
Don't do it Ron UNLESS the chips are nearly rotten. Green chips or sawdust raises acidity ALOT here. Newspaper or heavy straw in the row middles or the tiller is probably the best. You could apply round-up with a shielded sprayer or wick applicator or paint brush if Colin has the time.

As a youngun, I helped my grandaddies put many a load of rotten sawdust on tobacco plant beds to improve the soil, but we used rotten, black sawdust only.

Your sandy soil may be affected differently than ours, but I would suggest that before doing anything, you submit a soil sample to determine its ph level. The soil test will tell you if you need lime and how much to apply.

NCDA does our soil tests free. I'd check with your county ag agent or at a farm store to see what the procedure is in your area. This is soil testing season. It takes several weeks for our results to come back, so I'd make it a New Year's resolution.
 

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petra79 said:
wizzard said:
i used to put wood chip between the house and shop, didnt realy matter much if they was big or lil chips. only lasted a couple years. old convayor belting between the garden rows works great for weed control. then at the end of the year just wash and dry them roll up and throw in the shed
Got a few belts you want to drop off here????????? Bet that would work nice.

if youve got a local gravel/sand pit around just stop and ask if they've got any old ones there throwin out, that how i got mine
 
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Jim in NC said:
petra79 said:
Even though we have internet to help in research, its funny how one page says things are fine and the next expert says don't do it??? Some sites have said ALL wood chips rob the soil of nitrogen and make the acidity levels high. Others say mainly Pine chips make it high. Thats why I came here to hear from those who may have had a first hand experience.
I have seen where straw will make the ground a lil tougher so I don't use that. If hay will work I can pick up a large bale and break it open and lay on the ground for a season. Then use it the next year.
Just wanting to learn before I learn the hard way.
I appreciate the input sir. The soil in the area we will use next year appears to be a good black dirt. It is next to a marshy area so it holds moisture good.
Don't do it Ron UNLESS the chips are nearly rotten. Green chips or sawdust raises acidity ALOT here. Newspaper or heavy straw in the row middles or the tiller is probably the best. You could apply round-up with a shielded sprayer or wick applicator or paint brush if Colin has the time.

As a youngun, I helped my grandaddies put many a load of rotten sawdust on tobacco plant beds to improve the soil, but we used rotten, black sawdust only.

Your sandy soil may be affected differently than ours, but I would suggest that before doing anything, you submit a soil sample to determine its ph level. The soil test will tell you if you need lime and how much to apply.

NCDA does our soil tests free. I'd check with your county ag agent or at a farm store to see what the procedure is in your area. This is soil testing season. It takes several weeks for our results to come back, so I'd make it a New Year's resolution.
Thanks Jim, Actually I could just ask the neighbor who currently leases the land from me to see if he's done any soil testing on that field or where to get it done.
 
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
wizzard said:
petra79 said:
wizzard said:
i used to put wood chip between the house and shop, didnt realy matter much if they was big or lil chips. only lasted a couple years. old convayor belting between the garden rows works great for weed control. then at the end of the year just wash and dry them roll up and throw in the shed
Got a few belts you want to drop off here????????? Bet that would work nice.

if youve got a local gravel/sand pit around just stop and ask if they've got any old ones there throwin out, that how i got mine
Will check that out next time I'm at one to change a hose out. Thanks
 
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