Nitrogen loss - Knowledgebase Question

Name: Pam Larsen
Carlsborg, Wa
Question by quailjunctio
April 28, 2009
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?


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Answer from NGA
April 28, 2009

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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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