honeysuckle mulch...

gardenvet

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So I chopped up a ton of honeysuckle trees on the side of my hiuse and chopped them all up today. Would u throw this in a raised garden planter you eventually want to make an actually raised garden from? It so incredibly invasive Im nervous to use it there. I dont have a true compost bin. My dad says it will kill off any seeds. Its a 2 x 6 ft raised bed thats about 27in high. I just dont want this stuff coming back and growing up in the bed. Put it if the bed it will be fine or bag all to the curb?? Pix of the pile of chopped up honeysuckle and pix of my newly made need to be filled raised garden beds I dont want to contaminate with honeysuckle 😳
 

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Dirtmechanic

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I believe I wouldhave to start those beds with pastuerized (hot) compost. That is a lot of work, and it would be a shame to contaminate it with fresh materials that probably have picked up their own fungus or bacteria or virus even though they survived ok.
 

flowerbug

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So I chopped up a ton of honeysuckle trees on the side of my hiuse and chopped them all up today. Would u throw this in a raised garden planter you eventually want to make an actually raised garden from? It so incredibly invasive Im nervous to use it there. I dont have a true compost bin. My dad says it will kill off any seeds. Its a 2 x 6 ft raised bed thats about 27in high. I just dont want this stuff coming back and growing up in the bed. Put it if the bed it will be fine or bag all to the curb?? Pix of the pile of chopped up honeysuckle and pix of my newly made need to be filled raised garden beds I dont want to contaminate with honeysuckle 😳

i see no problem with using chopped plants at the bottom of a raised bed for a few inches thick to replace dirt as over time they'll break down anyways. it depends upon how deep you want to plant whatever else into the rest of the soil you put on top. a foot or more deep layer of soil over a few inches of chipped materials like this no problem IMO. the rest of what you have left you can use as a mulch or in a compost heap.
 
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flowerbug

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I believe I wouldhave to start those beds with pastuerized (hot) compost. That is a lot of work, and it would be a shame to contaminate it with fresh materials that probably have picked up their own fungus or bacteria or virus even though they survived ok.

we live in a soup of fungi, bacteria and viruses (and other things besides), and so does the rest of the creatures on this planet - as soon as they built those raised beds they were contaminated with all sorts of things. the best defense is a diverse soil community - i wish i could get that going here...
 

Dirtmechanic

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we live in a soup of fungi, bacteria and viruses (and other things besides), and so does the rest of the creatures on this planet - as soon as they built those raised beds they were contaminated with all sorts of things. the best defense is a diverse soil community - i wish i could get that going here...
True, but some medium materials I would use here such as vermiculite are not so edible, like the minerals in soil. Nor charcoals, perlites etc. In fact it is probably true some gardeners get too much organic material in containers like those. Since they are containers, enhancing the inner airspace with something that maintains its structure is helpful, although even those things can become compacted.

I think I would have to use an auger to loosen up that much material. Even a short shovel seems painful.
 

flowerbug

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True, but some medium materials I would use here such as vermiculite are not so edible, like the minerals in soil. Nor charcoals, perlites etc. In fact it is probably true some gardeners get too much organic material in containers like those. Since they are containers, enhancing the inner airspace with something that maintains its structure is helpful, although even those things can become compacted.

I think I would have to use an auger to loosen up that much material. Even a short shovel seems painful.

i'd love to have that pile of green chopped up material to work with. :) my gardens would love it.

i've not ever had good luck using perlite or vermiculite in gardens because the weather/rains/wind move them around too much and it's a mess. a good structured topsoil with organic amendments and mulch on top (once things have settled down) has worked much better. for a raised garden bed my general problem has always been that i would rather just have the entire garden raised up far enough and then i don't have all those edges or pathways to maintain. i'm into simple and inexpensive.

when i've had extra organic materials in the past i've often dug deep enough holes that i could store the stuff underground. a few years later when i need it again i can dig it up and spread it around. sometimes it ends up looking exactly like peat moss and it even smells like it. with our heavy clay soil it seals in things so well that i can even have it store the methane given off. i've dug up some spots where i was very glad i didn't have an open flame as it probably would have gone pop. :)
 

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i'd love to have that pile of green chopped up material to work with. :) my gardens would love it.

i've not ever had good luck using perlite or vermiculite in gardens because the weather/rains/wind move them around too much and it's a mess. a good structured topsoil with organic amendments and mulch on top (once things have settled down) has worked much better. for a raised garden bed my general problem has always been that i would rather just have the entire garden raised up far enough and then i don't have all those edges or pathways to maintain. i'm into simple and inexpensive.

when i've had extra organic materials in the past i've often dug deep enough holes that i could store the stuff underground. a few years later when i need it again i can dig it up and spread it around. sometimes it ends up looking exactly like peat moss and it even smells like it. with our heavy clay soil it seals in things so well that i can even have it store the methane given off. i've dug up some spots where i was very glad i didn't have an open flame as it probably would have gone pop. :)
Its unique for me to hear you say you experience what I tell others about burial of materials in my clay! Oxygen rules!

I admit I cheat and use my cement mixer to make up soil when I need a lot. Just pure laziness on my part, but it comes out more like a potting soil. And I will make it a bit tailored to what I am growing, which is usually but not always tomatoes.
 
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flowerbug

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Its unique for me to hear you say you experience what I tell others about burial of materials in my clay! Oxygen rules!

I admit I cheat and use my cement mixer to make up soil when I need a lot. Just pure laziness on my part, but it comes out more like a potting soil. And I will make it a bit tailored to what I am growing, whih is usually but not always tomatoes.

i do low till. with as many gardens as i have it's just not possible for me to till them and besides i think it is destructive to the soil community. normal for me is to dig a trench to bury what i've grown in a garden and that is where all the garden debris from that space ends up. this way i'm disturbing 5-10% of a garden each season. it's a lot less work for sure and the only way i can really get them all done. i never have enough mulch or organic materials. the worms always appreciate whatever i can give them.
 

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You are going to enjoy those raised beds but they are a pain to fill. Good luck with that.

Are there any seeds mixed in with that honeysuckle? Did you get it before it went to seed? I try to avoid noxious seeds in my compost and raised beds. If you have a decent soils mix in a raised bed they aren't that hard to weed out but you have to stay on top of them. You don't want honeysuckle to get established. In a veggie garden I'd consider it a noxious weed.

I don't know how easily honeysuckle roots from cuttings. I'd think pretty easily but would not let this discourage me much. Just be aware it could happen. Honeysuckle can be kind of woody, It won't last nearly as long as cedar or oak but it can be kind of slow to break down unless that is all fresh growth. I don't know how woody that is, it doesn't look that bad. It should break down pretty fast even if it is old growth woody. It goes against the grain to bag that up and send it to the landfill.

It also goes against the grain for a gardener to not be able to compost. You are going to have a lot of stuff that should not be bagged and sent to the landfill. Not just excess or bad veggies but the plants they grow on. That stuff can be turned into black gold and can fill a lot of bags when it is fresh.

What is your fill schedule and plans for those raised beds. It probably involves truckloads of dirt or other materials. If you are trucking the material in you want to fill all of them then. Logistics play into this.

My thoughts. Just use it an commit to removing any sprouts as they show up. In you raised beds this should be manageable, either seeds or cuttings. Maybe put this as a layer at the bottom of those beds.

Can you spread it out, maybe in the bottom of a few of those beds so it dries out and can't root from cuttings? Once it is dead it won't root. Or pile it into one bed and let it age. There is still the possibility of seeds to consider. If it is full of seeds the landfill is probably the right answer, much as I hate to think that way. I talk about rooting from cuttings a lot but I really think that is a minor issue.

I would strongly urge you think about how you can compost. At least a barrel composter if you can't make a pile. A barrel composter would take care of the seeds issue if you turn it often and let it heat up.
 

gardenvet

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Thanks for all of the advice! The initial stuff we chopped up was all dead stuff. Had been sitting out a few weeks waiting for me to finish cutting down the evergreen. However I pruned a bunch of new branches because we had the chopper so that all went into it as well. We chopped up the dead stuff first and the put it in the bottom. I have other wood from the former raised beds that is helping to fill the bottom later along with river rocks and cutting from the evergreen we had to chop down. I usually take leaf cuttings and throw that in too. Then I put a layer of carboard and then fill dirt. We initialy envisioned a dump truck but honestly we would have to scoop it out of our driveway, then rescoop it again into the beds. So we r getting a few pallets of dirt because the bags will be so much easier to move and empty. We r still within budget so the extra costs of the bags is ok with us. I am considering saving one of the smaller bins as a compost or building one on the opposite side of the yard so its out of the way of the rest of the area. We had a couple of sheet metals left but would have to get more of the boards. Or I may just buy a round tumbler one I can just tumble. Much easier I would think?
 
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