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Many studies have shown that crop straw is rich in organic material and soil nutrients, so it is increasingly considered to be an important natural organic fertilizer –.
Organic mulch covers the ground, acting like a tidy, beneficial blanket in your veggie garden — call it the Silent Gardener. Common types include compost, pine needles, fine bark, and wheat straw, among others (see list below).
An Important Note: Make sure you know the difference in Straw and Hay so you won’t confuse the two. We will not belabor at this time all the bad things chemicals do to our soil and gardens but will concentrate on whether or not we — as organic gardeners — can safely use straw that has been sprayed with herbicides.
Straw is one of the best mulch materials you can use around your vegetable plants. It’s clean, it’s light, and it breaks down relatively easily, giving your plants more of what they need to grow.
The amount of organic straw you will find in most areas is minimal. Very few are growing it by percentage of the farmers and those who are mostly keep it for their own soil improvement. Beyond that your best bet is to grow your own.
It contains no pesticides or chemicals, only straw and guar gum as the tacking agent.
Spreading the straw out to solarize for a couple weeks will reduce the glyphosate significantly, it’s not a very light stable molecule. If you can’t do that, then fungi can metabolize it as they break the straw down. But for that you would have to pile it up and keep it wet. Hose it down when the surface dries out.
Incorporate a large quantity of pine needles into a landscape carefully. Do not use pine needles for mulch around tomatoes or other plants if the pine needles were piled or stored poorly and smell sour or like sulfur, as this bad mulch can injure or kill plants.
Not much, at least in California, and usually applied early in the plant’s growth so that there isn’t any residue in the harvested material. Ask around for organic straw, and if you can’t find it, ask about how conventional crops are grown. … As we are living in Thailand, we can find rice straw.
Straw will decompose like any other organic material but they’ll decompose a lot slower. As straw rots, it releases nutrients, feeding the plants growing in it. Straw actually makes your garden better.
Some common ingredients used in hay preservatives are: 1 & 2 – Ammonium Propionate (buffered propionic acid) & Propionic Acid (more corrosive) are organic acids and the most common main ingredients in hay preservatives. Propionic acid was 1st registered as a pesticide in the early 1970’s.
Hay is a crop that is grown and harvested as a feed crop for cattle, horses and other farm animals. Straw on the other hand is a byproduct of a grain crop; in our area it’s usually usually wheat straw that we see. … Hay often is made up of a combination of different plants growing in a field or meadow.
Straw improves the soil structure and makes the soil more porous. When straw is mixed into the soil, it is immediately attacked by fungi and bacteria. These micro-organisms need carbohydrates for their growth and use the straw as a carbon and energy source.
Straw on Garden Beds Like most mulch materials, straw helps conserve soil moisture and prevents rapid soil drying and drought stress. Using straw to kill weeds is also effective, as it suppresses most unwanted plants so they can’t grow and establish in the bed.
Straw bales are especially useful for gardeners looking for an impermanent raised bed solution. As the straw decomposes, it adds nutrients to your garden, but after a couple seasons, all the materials can just be taken up and composted (except, possibly, for any synthetic twine).
Straw is composed mainly of carbon. Breaking down high-carbon plant material requires nitrogen. Plant growth also requires nitrogen.
Whereas regular grass for hay uses artificial nutrients, organic hay is only fertilized by real manure.
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The best straw for gardening comes from wheat or oats, if you can get it. Most of the seed has been removed depending on how effective the farmer’s thresher is and how much weed has grown in his field.
EZ Straw Mulch is the perfect add on solution for planting Grass seed. It contains processed wheat straw and tackifier, a natural powder used in hydro seeding that sticks together when wet.
I decided to use this straw to cover my garden to prevent weeding and turned out to be a nightmare! … The Seeding Straw does not contain herbicide or grass seed, so we’d be interested to hear more details.
The chemicals of greatest concern are picloram, clopyralid, and aminopyralid because they can remain active in hay, grass clippings, piles of manure and compost for an unusually long time. These herbicides eventually break down through exposure to sunlight, soil microbes, heat and moisture.
It is chemically similar to picloram, but clopyralid has a shorter half-life, is more water-soluble, and has a lower adsorption capacity than picloram. Clopyralid’s half-life in the environment averages one to two months and ranges up to one year.
The most common herbicides used for control of many broadleaf weeds in grass hay/pasture this time of year are the plant growth regulator herbicides such as 2,4-D, dicamba (Clarity, etc.), triclopyr products (Crossbow, Remedy Ultra, etc.), and clopyralid (Stinger, PastureGard, etc.).
The truth is pine needles do not make the soil more acidic. … They are a good mulching material that will keep the moisture in, suppress weeds and eventually add nutrients back to the soil. You can also add them to a compost pile; they will slowly break down over time.
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What Plants Can I Use Pine Needles On? Use pine straw any and everywhere in your yard—it works great for tree, flower and vegetable gardens. In some cases, pine needles acidify the soil as they break down, so acid-loving plants like holly, azaleas, and rhododendrons appreciate a coat of pine needles.
Don’t use your leftover straw bale as mulch; it will only present you with nasty weeds next planting season. Instead, use them to actually grow a garden. … It is better to compost them first, in a nice, hot compost bin, to kill the weed seeds.
Straw is one of the best mulch materials to use around vegetable plants because it is organic.
It will release carbon for a healthy compost situation. Making compost from straw alone is not recommended, as it will not break down quickly enough without nitrogen and can result in a moldy mess.
Not only does straw keep grass seed moist and warm, it also keeps the seed from blowing around on windy days or washing away during heavy rainstorms watering. … Straw also discourages birds and small mammals from feasting on the seed. As it decomposes, the straw contributes valuable nutrients to the soil.
But because straw is packed so tightly, the cores and bottoms do collect a lot of moisture that they can’t get rid of and tend to mold up—especially in a wet year.
Hay Stem MoistureLarge Square Baler Application RateApplication Cost Per Ton based on ($1.39/pound)22% and under6 pounds/ton$6.0023% – 26%10 pounds/ton$10.0027% – 30%DO NOT BALEAbove 30%DO NOT BALE
Commonly used plants for hay include mixtures of grasses such as ryegrass (Lolium species), timothy, brome, fescue, Bermuda grass, orchard grass, and other species, depending on region. Hay may also include legumes, such as alfalfa (lucerne) and clovers (red, white and subterranean).
Hay preservatives are generally applied using an aftermarket spray system mounted near the baler pick-up. … According to sources cited below, smaller bales ranging from 20-25% moisture should be treated with approximately 0.5% propionic acid (in some cases products may be used at 0.5 ± 0.14% of wet bale weight).
Hay and straw both make great mulch in the garden as long as they weren’t treated with persistent herbicides or contain noxious weed seeds. Using hay or straw as mulch in the garden has the following benefits: Reduces moisture loss and reduces watering. Keeps soil cooler in hot weather.
Straw is mainly used for bedding though it can also be used as mulch. It is edible, but not very tasty and not very nutritious either.
We feed straw to the vast majority of donkeys, mules, ponies and horses kept at The Donkey Sanctuary. Our animals are all housed in groups with free access to exercise areas as opposed to being kept stabled.
Why Straw is Good For Your Garden: It blocks out the sun, preventing weeds from growing and preventing hidden weed seeds from germinating. It holds in moisture so your soil stays damp longer (this means you won’t need to water as often). … As the straw breaks down and composts it will make your soil better.
How long does it take a plastic straw to decompose? What was once the most convenient tool is now going through a shift for being one of the most hated plastic products – plastic straws. It will take approximately 200 years for a plastic straw to decompose.