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Old 12-18-2008, 02:52 PM   #21
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I have pretty much replaced black plastic with cardboard. Water first. 2 layers will smother most weeds. Not sure about ivy - I am testing that now. Cover the cardboard with pine straw.

Then sit back and order something that comes in a LARGE box on the internet! Im always running out of cardboard.
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Old 12-18-2008, 03:34 PM   #22
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Talk to your local appliance, and big box stores, hazelnut. Usually they'll give you all the cardboard you can haul. Just watch out for the waxed kind. It will break down, but it take 2 men and a boy to get it to that point.
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Old 12-18-2008, 08:52 PM   #23
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That's a good idea getting big hunks of cardboard from appliance stores. No body wants it so why not take it off their hands.
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Old 12-18-2008, 09:04 PM   #24
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How quick I pull natural leaf mulch off my beds depends on the trees I have, how wet the mulch is. Since all I gots is Acer saccarhinum...I pull the mulch off in late March, early April. Acer leaves mat down into a solid mass, don't decompose that quickly and can cause problems for early rising spring ephemerals.
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Old 12-23-2008, 08:05 AM   #25
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Do you rake them up and use them for compost then?
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Old 01-30-2009, 11:54 PM   #26
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I went to the garden center today and got the usual "busted bag" special - Today the prize was 2 huge bags of moisture control potting soil and 8 bags of red rubber mulch.

Is rubber much safe to use, if there's a possibility that a veggie could end up there? Or should I just use it to fill holes in the yard?
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Old 01-31-2009, 06:53 AM   #27
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hazelnut, You'll have to let us know how well you did with the cardboard over ivy. I tried this 2 seasons ago and although the ivy temporarily was reduced it's back now. I'm trying plastic next.

I've started most of my new gardens by using the Lasagna gardening method of newspaper or cardboard covered by various layers of organic material. One of the things I noticed when I use newspaper or cardboard is a huge increase in earthworms directly under either, at the surface of the soil.

For a native woodland garden I avoid this approach since I don't want to destroy the naturally accumulated duff these plants like to grow in or promote the introduction of more earthworms there. I do enhance the site by adding more chopped up leaves and twigs and pine needles for a quicker build up and after planting I gently remove any accumulation that is smothering smaller plants.

biigblueyes, The rubber mulch is a petrochemical product and not a safe or environmentally friendly choice for your garden. I don't think you should use it at all, even to fill holes. Try to return it and get your money back.


The photo shows years of accumulated mulch, mostly from the 2 huge Norway spruce trees above the woodland garden. Unfortunately I removed years worth of duff when I first started to garden. If I only knew then what I know now!
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Old 01-31-2009, 08:19 AM   #28
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I can't return it, but it didn't really cost me anything. I get the whole pallet of whatever is on it for a few bucks, but I have to take everything on it.

I suspected it shouldn't go in the garden, or even around my trees - fruit trees. I'll use it to fill holes in the driveway instead.
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Old 02-01-2009, 10:04 PM   #29
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I really like pine needles, but my trees do not produce enough every year so I settle for shredded cedar. It does not attract termites-yet.
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Old 02-01-2009, 10:21 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbrady View Post
I really like pine needles, but my trees do not produce enough every year so I settle for shredded cedar. It does not attract termites-yet.
Pine needles are a great mulch. What type of pines do you have?
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