The Q&A Archives: Composting tobacco waste

Question: What are the benefits/side effects of using tobacco mulch for composting?

Answer: According to research done by the Rodale Institute, tobacco wastes can be used in place of barnyard manure in compost. It should be well mixed with other organic matter, since the nicotine in the tobacco can kill soil organisms and insects if it gets concentrated in one spot. Also, tobacco wastes can harbor diseases that can pass to related crops (tomatoes, potatoes, peppers & eggplant), so use the compost on other crops. If you are confident that your compost will heat up to 150-160F, which kill most pest organisms, it may be safe to apply it to your tomatoes, etc.

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