We live in a high calcium area near the mountains in PA. I am wondering if wood ash from our wood stove can be recycled into our property. Not for use in the veggie gardens,but how about borders and flowers?
You want to be careful with applying wood ash, as it turns soil alkaline. First, do a simple pH test on your soil. Kits are available at garden centers and big boxes. If your soil is 7.0 or above, don't use ashes on anything other than fruit trees and lilacs. See my blog next week for details. If the pH is low, apply a scant scattering of ash over flower beds. You can do it this time of year, scattering on top of the snow.
I'm presently learning about the following that make great soil. It's fascinating.
- Fungi -
Arthropods: Insects: ants, termites, cicada, grubs, mole crickets, etc. Mites, Springtails, Millipedes, Centipedes, etc. Crustaceans: Crayfish, Isopods, etc. - Annelids: Nematodes, Earthworms
How do you plant carrots with the rest of the veggies in the same 9x9 garden when carrots need sandier soil? Is it enough to use a great compost throughout, and then just put a trough of sand under the carrots? Thanks!
Light soil is the key with carrots. Amend a spot with sand or coarse matter like perlite that doesn't hold moisture. Heavier soils result in split carrots and other malformations. Remember....carrots are roots!