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Re: seedling mulch


We have used fossilized oyster shells to mulch several of our plant beds. They've been around for four or five million years; don't think they'll break down in my lifetime.

On Saturday, August 7, 2004, at 12:51 AM, Kitty wrote:

What I have read always indicates that they eventually break down, providing
calcium to the soil. Everything has a pH - acid, neutral, or base. OS has
to be something. On the other hand, I can't imagine adding so much OS so as
to affect the pH of the soil if you're just using it around bulb plantings.
Washington used it for his garden paths, so I imagine the soil beneath the
paths might have been affected. Still, it would just be nice to know.


Kitty

----- Original Message -----
From: "Andrea H" <hodgesaa@earthlink.net>
To: <gardenchat@hort.net>
Sent: Friday, August 06, 2004 10:40 PM
Subject: Re: [CHAT] seedling mulch


Kitty, I don't have it in writing, but from living in a place where oyster
shells ABOUND in the ground, I have been told by several reputable
gardeners, horticulturists , that oyster shells will not effect the soil
ph.
Something about them not breaking down into whatever is acceptable to the
soil, I can't remember. I'll try and find a more detailed explanation from
someone more knowledgeable than me.
A


Andrea H
Beaufort, SC


----- Original Message ----- From: "Kitty" <kmrsy@comcast.net> To: <gardenchat@hort.net> Sent: Friday, August 06, 2004 7:32 PM Subject: Re: [CHAT] seedling mulch


Well, I stopped in at the co-op today. They don't have any grit at all,
but
he's ordering in a bag for me. They carry starter or chicken grit. You
don't get to pick the type of granite like they do in England. I
mentioned
that we'd sell it at Bulbapalooza for critter control and he said he
thought
oyster shells might be better. We've sold those for 4 years, but I
occasionally get someone who asks about OS raising the pH. We already
have
neutral to somewhat lime soil here. I know you end up with more Calcium
in
the soil after breakdown - and we don't need more calcium here - but I
have
never been able to find reputable info on the pH of oyster shells. Does
anyone know?


Since I don't have an answer, I thought I'd try grit this year instead.
I
can mention its other uses and possibly sell more.


----- Original Message ----- From: "Marge Talt" <mtalt@clubhouse-designs.com> To: <gardenchat@hort.net> Sent: Friday, August 06, 2004 12:59 AM Subject: Re: [CHAT] seedling mulch


From: Kitty <kmrsy@comcast.net>
Thanks, Marge.  I'll be checking on it tomorrow.  At this co-op you
tell
them what you want, they find it on the computer - if there are
choices
within that item, they'll ask which you want, and you pay for it.
Then you
go have them load it up.
----------

Ah.....the 'no touchy the product' type place:-)  Well, best of luck
there....

Marge Talt, zone 7 Maryland
mtalt@hort.net
Editor:  Gardening in Shade
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Island Jim
Southwest Florida
27.0 N, 82.4 W
Zone 10a
Minimum 30 F [-1 C]

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