Re: Bark Mulch and community gardens
- Subject: Re: [cg] Bark Mulch and community gardens
- From: Adam36055@aol.com
- Date: Fri, 18 Apr 2003 12:52:52 EDT
Bark mulch can break down as well as anything else, but unless the yard
behind you has been in your family for generations, the smartest thing, after
setting up a compost bin this weekend for your veggie waste (if your
municipality permits backyard composting) you might want to do is to do
some soil testing, if you haven't do it for a while.
In the best case, you can find out what's in your dirt and if you need to
amend it in any particular way for veggies, perennials, whatever.
In the worst case, if there has been any environmental pollution on your land
(usually lead paint) or any other kinds of heavy metal or chemical seepage
from nearby residences of businesses (like a garage or long closed factory)
you can find out, and perhaps create raised beds or containers that won't
soak up the bad stuff.
You can get a line on soil testing from the Virginia Cooperative Extension :
http://www.ext.vt.edu/. Here is a list of local offices:
http://www.ext.vt.edu/offices/. There is a Home Gardening button on the
website with an awful lot of links which can give you great, in-state
information on how to best deal with your dirt.
Also, I'd be remiss in passing up this opportunity for you to contact
community garden legend ( and former ACGA president)
Mr. Tom Tyler, M.S., Extension Agent for Environmental Horticulture, Virginia
Cooperative Extension, Arlington County, firstname.lastname@example.org.
<< Subj: [cg] Bark Mulch and community gardens
Date: 4/18/03 11:34:20 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: email@example.com (John Richmond)
I'm a long-time lurker on this list who enjoys receiving it every day. I
live in the oldest residential neighborhood in Richmond, Virginia, one mile
from downtown, the state capitol, and city hall. This year I'm starting a
backyard garden using biointensive techniques, especially from John Jeavons.
I just put in my compost piles last night.
Parts of two of the beds I want to dig are in a part of the yard that is
covered with bark mulch. Can I mix that into the ground as I dig, or is it
more productive to do something else with it?
Congratulations on ACGA's move to Blacksburg. I lived there for six years
and not only is it a wonderful town, but it will find a great deal of
community support there, some of it from old friends of mine who direct
Virginia Tech's recycling program and the student YMCA. Hopefully we can
make some use of this resource in Richmond. There is a small community
garden on a lot where there used to be a house. In my section of the city
and in a few others there are thousands of vacant lots, a few of them
block-sized, where gardens could take off. I'd like to get in on that
movement once I've got a little experience with my own garden.
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