Ask a Question forum: Are tamarind leaves safe to use for compost?

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North Queensland
May 31, 2017 3:21 AM CST

I live in North Queensland, Australia, and have a massive tamarind tree in my back yard. I would love to use its leaves for composting (there are piles and piles of them all around the yard), however a neighbour told me that they are not safe due to high acidity.

Has anyone got any info or knowledge to help with this? Can't find anything on either side of the argument online, so am turning to the forums.

Thank you for reading.
Name: Laurens Passer

May 31, 2017 5:40 AM CST
Hi Ensortion, I tought you can use them for composting as long as you do not have to much of them. I am not entirely sure tough. A very interesting question for sure.
Name: Tiffany purpleinopp
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May 31, 2017 8:00 AM CST
The concern does seem to have some validity, tamarind is known to be allelopathic.

You may want to compost the leaves significantly before using as a mulch. I would never let a little thing like allelopathy stop me from utilizing organic matter, but just might involve more work of moving it more times to bring it to a partially decomposed state before being able to bring it to tended areas.

Plants with known allelopathic properties usually have a list of plants that tolerate the allelopathic substance. If you happen to be gardening with those, the concern is moot.
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