The Q&A Archives: Alkaline Wood Ashes

Question: Are wood ashes too alkaline to apply to a mixed perennial bed?

Answer: The answer to your question really depends on what type of wood was used and how much you plan to apply at a time as well as the condition and analysis of your soil to begin with -- and what type of perennials you are growing! Wood ashes leach fairly quickly, so a very light (as in a dusting) application would not affect the pH substantially or for very long. However, you would probably be wise to run some basic soil tests first and see what your soil is (or is not) lacking. Your County Extension should be able to help you with the tests and with interpreting the results.

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