Late last Fall, I found some time to head over to the mulch pit to pick up a couple of loads (in 5 gallon buckets) of municipal biosolids and brought them home. I dumped the biosolids out and scattered them across a number of the perennial beds in the front/back/side yards . A top dressing of sorts. And a dormant application of organic material with the goal of improving the soil conditions. I also thought that by applying them in early Winter/late Fall...there would be ample time for them to 'age in place' during the dormant period. With the return to the garden in the past few weeks to begin to prune back/remove old stems and lightly begin to clean up, I've noticed some areas where the naked soil is 'showing'. What can fix that? Mulch! Oh...I guess that's true. But, I also thought...biosolids could do the trick. And...off I went to pick up a load. Here, below, are a few spots where I spread the material out. I think I have 8 five-gallon buckets.
Showing posts with the label soil amendment
Last week, I read this post from Lee Reich where Lee compares spreading their hardwood ashes to conjuring the dark arts and had a little laugh. I also...quickly learned a bunch - including how wood ash is a good source of Potassium (the "P" in N-P-K) and how a garden amendment that I've heard about/read about - Potash - is (obviously) the root word from Potassium, but is made up (mostly) of Ash. Hence the name. Lee talks about how the spreading of wood ash isn't a precise project; rather just a thin 'tossing' of the ash on the beds does the job. Because we burn a lot of fires during the Winter, we end up with a surplus of ash that I collect at a couple of intervals when I clean out the fireplace and ash bucket. Over the years, I've posted about how I've spread this ash - around trees in 2019 and on top of some snow in the perennial beds in 2022 . I ended up with a bit more than five gallons of ash from Cherry, Birch, Oak, Hickory and....well
I've used biosolids (municipal biosolids from Downers Grove) in various ways over the years on our property - topdressing of my lawn in spots, as an amendment and accelerant in our compost bins , as a vertical mulch to try to improve the soil/clay conditions in my front porch bed (along with leaf litter) , as a soil/perennial bed amendment with stump grindings to attempt to balance the nitrogen loss , as a little boost when planting new shrubs like the SnowQueen Oakleaf Hydrangeas and most recently as both soil cover and hole-filler in the newly extended IB2DWS bed area with my new dwarf conifer garden and new (to me) flowers. This year, I'm going to be using them in a few (new to me) additional ways: first, as a dormant application on top of my beds. This Fall, I blew most of the leaves out of my beds and chopped them up with the mower. I then blew some of those chopped leaves back into the beds and left plenty of small pieces in the lawn. Think of this as...sort-of.