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Thread: What do you do with the shaving ?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Palm Springs, Ca
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    1,167

    What do you do with the shaving ?

    I like to recycle so i put my shavings into plastic trash containers and my daughter takes them out to the barn where she rides horses and uses them to line the stalls and walk ways. However, walnut shavings get tossed because animals get some type of allerigic reaction to this type of wood.

    Others have stated they use it to mix into the soil around trees and plants but i ran into this on the web and thought i would post it for those of you that do use it for mulch etc-

    ================================================== ======

    Digging wood mulch into the ground (or anything else organic that still is rotting or still has to decompose) is not a good idea, why, well the decomposition will need nitrogen and if it is dug into the soil it will get it out of the soil.

    But as a mulch this is NOT the case, as the air is 78% nitrogen it is very easy for the bacteria to get the required nitrogen out of the air, and it is not easy or needed to get it out of the soil, after the organic matter is decomposed by the bacteria, the bacteria will die off and release the used nitrogen back to the air, or if the decomposed material is dug into the soil, the nitrogen will be released into the soil.

    The other beneficial factor of having mulch on the top of the soil is the prevention of heating and drying of the black garden soil, and thus the fine hair roots that grow close to the top of the soil are able to absorb both moisture (and the minerals) and are able to take in nitrogen and oxygen etc.

    The thought that the mulch does take nitrogen from the soil is basically wrong, as the bacteria that does the decomposition does take the nitrogen that is readily available from the surrounding air, since they are not in contact with the dirt, they are not able to do that, even if they wanted or needed to do that, and since the nitrogen is very easily absorbed from the air that is where they do get it.

    So don't dig it in until it is decomposed, because in that case the air/nitrogen is not as easily accessible and the bacteria will take it from the surrounding soil it is in contact with.
    First you have to learn the rules - Beginner
    Then you have to learn advanced rules - Professional
    Then you disregard the rules - This takes you to the master level................

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Cornwall, England
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    392
    I use mine as floor covering for the chickens, prefer it to straw. Chicken poo is very concentrated so it helps break the wood shavings down quicker. The shavings cleared from the coop go into a pile in the garden, not the compost bin then when rotted down they can be added to the bin. Digging it directly in to the soil isn't a good idea as stated but I also use it on the paths in the garden. It rots down quite quickly and helps stop weeds growing.

    Pete

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Mountain Home, Arkansas
    Posts
    11,825
    I have a big brush and scrap wood pile in back that I use for a shooting backstop. I just keep adding and building it. Shavings, wood, everything wood goes on it.
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Tellico Plains, Tennessee
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    4,351
    I just use it as mulch in the garden... I lay it between the rows to form a path to walk on... doesn't seem to hurt the garden, keeps the feet from getting muddy.
    Chuck
    Tellico Plains, TN
    https://www.etsy.com/shop/TellicoTurnings
    My parents taught me to respect my elders, but it's getting harder and harder to find any.
    If you go looking for trouble, it will usually find you.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Bucks County PA
    Posts
    149

    Mulch pile

    I put mine in a mulch pile and add grass to help it decompose. last time I looked there were BIG fat earthworms all through it. Thats a good sign.

    I also laugh when I look at the pile during the winter and notice that it's not snow covered and it's giving off smoke. Gotta' love mother nature!
    See ya around,
    Dominic

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    DSM, IA
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    5,719
    I use it to keep weeds down in a few spots in the back yard. My mom asked for some while my dad's shop build was going on to help with a border on her new flower beds. Right now I have a pile about 3' high and wide in the back yard.

    I did turn some curlies into the soil around a redbud tree a year ago and the tree was dead the following spring.......Hope that wasn't the cause...
    A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone. -Henry David Thoreau
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Tellico Plains, Tennessee
    Posts
    4,351
    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Bower View Post
    I did turn some curlies into the soil around a redbud tree a year ago and the tree was dead the following spring.......Hope that wasn't the cause...
    Could be if you drastically changed the PH of the soil...
    Chuck
    Tellico Plains, TN
    https://www.etsy.com/shop/TellicoTurnings
    My parents taught me to respect my elders, but it's getting harder and harder to find any.
    If you go looking for trouble, it will usually find you.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    1,448
    Good news and bad news with walnut shavings. Walnut (mixed with horse urine) is toxic to the horses (even through their hooves).

    Walnut has a chemical that prevents seeds from germinating. So don't use it in garden mulch. But DO use it to mulch flower beds where things are not grown from seed. I mulch around our house plantings every few years... the chemical in the walnut wears off in 3-4 years, so I have to do it again, but it sure keeps the weeds down. And I have a waiting list from friends for walnut shavings.

    The non-walnut shavings are given to a neighbor who mixes it with lawn grass clippings, which seems to be a good recipe to start compost.
    Charlie Plesums, Austin Texas
    (Retired early to become a custom furnituremaker)
    Lots of my free advice at www.solowoodworker.com

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
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    lutefisk capitol, USA
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    I used to bag it and take it to work. Whoever had a handy pickup box usually ended up with it. Got some great wars going that way. It usually escalated from there.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Central Illinois
    Posts
    936
    Some I use for mulch, but a lot of them are used by a potter friend in glazing his work.

    Bruce
    Bruce Shiverdecker - Retired Starving Artist ( No longer a Part timer at Woodcraft, Peoria, Il.)

    "The great thing about turning is that all you have to do is remove what's not needed and you have something beautiful. Nature does the hard part!"

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