Ashes can be very useful for your garden and for your plants by becoming a real fertilizer.
Whether in winter when the fireplace is running at full speed, in the fall after having burned leaves and old wood or in the spring during the "big cleaning", there is always an interest in use the ashes for the garden or vegetable patch.
- To read: Anti slugs and snails
Use of ashes in the garden
Whether from a wood fire or from herbaceous plants, ashes have many advantages:
- they allowalleviate soils that are too heavy (containing a lot of clay);
- their mineral composition makes them a good fertilizer for plants and vegetables, in particular thanks to their richness in potassium (K) and in phosphorus (P);
- they can turn out effective against pests such as slugs, snails or rodents.
What ashes to use in the garden?
The answer is no. There are some rules you need to follow, and the first of them is to only use the ash from totally healthy wood. You must therefore exclude:
- treated wood, including pallets;
- painted wood;
- plastic ;
Aside from wood ashes, know that coal ash (including those of the barbecue) are to forbid. Indeed, they contain heavy metals and sulfur residues.
Regarding the ashes from the burning of herbaceous plants, it is quite possible to use them. However, their composition differs from wood ashes. Indeed, they mainly contain silica, potash, a little phosphorus and magnesia. All of these are perfectly suitable for vegetable crops.
Wood ash, on the other hand, is rich in calcium salts and is therefore ideal for correct soil acidity. Therefore, they are unusable for heather earth plants.
When to use the ashes?
It all depends on the use you want to make of it:
- In autumn, if you want lighten your land or correct its acidity, spread a good quantity of ashes on the ground and spade the latter using a forklift. You can supplement the ashes and mix them with potting soil and sand. Note that the use of a spade should be avoided, in order to minimize the impact on garden auxiliaries such as earthworms.
- For use as fertilizer, it is preferable to carry out a intake just before crops. The minerals contained in the ashes are quickly eliminated by rain and watering (phenomenon of leaching), add ashes to the garden or vegetable patch on a regular basis, but not excessively.
Smart tip: You don't have to spread the ashes directly on the ground. One trick is to mix them with water and then filter the water. All that's left is to water your plants or vegetables while feeding them.
Use the ashes in your compost
The subject is debatable, but it is not impossible. On the other hand, you have to do it with parsimony. Spread the ash lightly between each layer of plant waste and scratch lightly to ensure it incorporates properly. However, pay attention to do not put too much. Indeed, with humidity, the ashes could create a movie which would prevent the good aeration of the compost.
If you are ever unsure of yourself, then it is best to avoid this practice.
- To read : Make your compost
Use the ashes in your garden or vegetable patch
To use the ashes in the garden or vegetable patch, you must follow a few rules:
- Let the ashes cool well before using them.
- Do not hesitate to sieve them, in order to remove waste and oversized elements.
- Make sure the ashes come from healthy woods. This rule is important, because if there are toxic elements in the wood, they will end up in the ashes and therefore in the vegetables of the kitchen garden.
Ashes as a slug repellent, what about?
It is true that the ashes, like the flax mulch, stick to slugs and thus limit their progression.
This requires forming a barrier 2 to 3 cm high around sensitive plants.
Note that once wet, the ashes clog up and have more effect on slugs. It is therefore preferable to use this technique when the weather is dry.