The Q&A Archives: Nitrogen loss

Question: Would it be correct to say that, for example, sawdust as a mulch will not withdraw nitrogen from the soil but if mixed into the soil it will?

Answer: Raw wood, such as sawdust, can rob the soil of nitrogen where it is sitting on the ground. Nitrogen is used by the sawdust during the decomposition process. Typically the amount used is small and it usually comes from the environment so no additional nitrogen needs to be applied. WSU soil specialists have studied the effects of sawdust as a mulch and have determined that it is safe to use. Hope this answers your question!

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