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Will my booby create nitrogen depletion in my soil?

Discussion in 'General Gardening Discussion' started by JohnD, Nov 12, 2017.

  1. JohnD

    JohnD Gardener

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    Over the last few years i've been using leaves to mulch my flower beds. Then the following year i dig it into the soil and reapply more leaf mulch. The beds are a mix of shrubs and flowers. Some of the shrubs have grown and some have remained the same size as the day i planted them, we are talking a couple of years.
    I recall some time ago reading that mulch should never be covered over with soil because in order for the decomposition process to take place it requires nitrogen, and the only place to get it from, once it is covered, is the soil. Which means that the necessary compound to help my plants thrive is being used to break down the organic matter i mulch with! Has anyone ever heard this before or am i over reacting?
     
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    • Fat Controller

      Fat Controller Cuddly Scottish Admin! Staff Member

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      I would say you are over-reacting; however, to be sure, why don't you lob a good dose of chicken manure pellets onto the flower beds - nitrogen aplenty, and coupled with the organic materials should give great results :blue thumb:
       
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      • ARMANDII

        ARMANDII ADMINISTRATOR Staff Member

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        The bacteria that break down leaves etc are oxygen loving but they survive nicely in soil, along with the worms, fungi, insects in the soil that also do the same job. To be honest I wouldn't add nitrogen as it will encourage soft and leafy growth in plants and it's the wrong time of year to add Nitrogen.

        Well, welcome to the world of gardening, John, because that's what Shrubs and Hardy Perennials do..........they and Nature don't read the gardening expert books and do their own thing!!:coffee::snorky:
         

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