Woodchips in raised beds.

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juvenal

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Woodchips in raised beds.
« on: November 09, 2017, 19:14 »
I'm building a 9' x 3' raised bed/trough. About 18" deep.

I'm thinking of filling bottom half with wood chips, and topping off with good soil.

Good idea? Bad idea? - or what?

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mumofstig

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Re: Woodchips in raised beds.
« Reply #1 on: November 09, 2017, 19:33 »
Covered wood chips take an awful long time to rot down into usable compost, so personally I wouldn't do it.

See what others think..
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Dantheman

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Re: Woodchips in raised beds.
« Reply #2 on: November 09, 2017, 20:07 »
HI,

I done this a few years back on a new bed I made up.  I planted sweetcorn in it they grew great, the soil afterwards was good all all the way down.

Dan
Dear God, Please can you stop the wind and rain and bring on the nice weather. Amen

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Plot 1 Problems

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Re: Woodchips in raised beds.
« Reply #3 on: November 10, 2017, 01:20 »
I'd say that wood chips direct in the ground is a very slow way to rot them down, although the worms will love them! I layer woodchips in my compost early in the year when there is an abundance of weed greens and by Autumn it's great compost to chuck in the beds.

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JayG

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Re: Woodchips in raised beds.
« Reply #4 on: November 10, 2017, 10:05 »
As Mum has said, they will take a long time to rot down, but you could argue that's not such a bad thing in this situation - your bed won't sink down as quickly as it would with something more easily broken down.

You may need to add a little more fertilizer than usual to compensate for the possible temporary loss of nitrates which the soil organisms will 'borrow' to feed themselves while they do their work of breaking down the woodchips, which contain very little nitrogen of their own.

If you know or suspect that the topsoil is a bit acidic, a dusting of lime wouldn't go amiss to keep it nice and sweet overall.
Sow your seeds, plant your plants, and plonk your potatoes in the soil.

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Blewit

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Re: Woodchips in raised beds.
« Reply #5 on: November 10, 2017, 18:30 »
Don't know how wood chips would behave but hugelkultur uses logs at the base of beds which must take ages to break down.



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