Brian comments on my recent Grocery Row Garden pictures:
“What are you using as mulch? It looks like straw, which you’ve warned against, so I imagine I’m incorrect.”
No, you’re not incorrect. It is straw. And I regularly warn people about using hay, straw, manure and various composts because of the extremely high risk of killing your garden with long-term herbicides.
As in this video:
It’s a serious issue, and you need to be really sure that your sources for mulch, manure and compost are free of these satanic ingredients.
However, that does not mean the actual amendments themselves are the problem. Straw and hay are excellent additions to the garden. We’ve used both for chicken coop bedding, mulch, compost pile additives, lasagna garden layers, storage for potatoes and more. We’ve also used manure to make compost, to layer into garden beds and as a dried addition to our potting soil mixes.
For thousands of years, they were perfectly fine to use. And now they often aren’t, thanks to the jackasses in government and Big Ag companies.
You can use hay, straw and manure if you know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that they do not contain long-term herbicide contamination.
In the case of the hay we’re using as mulch in the garden and for our compost piles, it came from a friend who does not spray his fields. This is becoming a rarity, and we are glad to support him by buying his hay any time we need it.
Just don’t trust anything you can’t verify is clean, or it can literally destroy your garden for months or years.