Creative ideas for ash disposal in yard

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stoveliker

Minister of Fire
Nov 17, 2019
5,167
Long Island NY
I just had to look this up, it seems the man is messing with our brains some sites say 6.5 to 7 others say 9 to 11, wait what?
blueberries predominantly grow in woods in heavy leaf or pine needle litter layers, which are acidic (see coaly), so blueberries prefer pH<7.
 

Ashful

Minister of Fire
Mar 7, 2012
16,939
Philadelphia
I mix my ash with concrete and make figurines of our favorite Hearth.com moderators . . . you should see my collection.
We should compare photos.

Anyone with a lawn usually has a pile of topsoil somewhere, collected from edging gardens, redefining beds, digging holes to plant trees, fence posts, or a basketball backboard post for the kids. The stove ash pans get dumped into a 10 gallon galvanized trash can with lid, and then about once per month I dump that can onto this pile of topsoil, along with each week's coffee grounds and chicken turds. It all gets turned over before use in filling various holes and low spots around the yard, which amounts to a few times per year.

The size of the pile various throughout the year, and from year to year, I'd guess probably 1 - 3 yards. I've never checked the pH, it's really not homogenous enough to give a valid result without me doing more mixing of chicken crap than I'd care to try, but have always wondered how it averages. I do take a random sampling of soil from around the lawn each March, mix it, and have it tested. I manage to keep my lawn pretty close to the middle of the ideal 6.0 - 6.8 range, but only with the aid of some lime every few years, it will naturally head low if left on its own.
 
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Dix

Minister of Fire
May 27, 2008
6,536
Long Island, NY
A little late to the party, but I'll play :)

Ashes get used for deicing the dirt driveway, and traction under the car tires on bad icy days, too. I don't do the walk ways with them, usually, but will if it's bad (icy).Hate tracking them BACK into the house.

I spread them into the flower beds during the winter, and mix them in with the leaves I've shredded during the fall with the riding mower, and directed into said flower beds through the mowers side chute. Works pretty well. I do admit to also adding horse manure to the beds, to helps speed things along.

Mix 'em in with the compost pile, to.

My next door neighbor (newly elected Chief of the fire dept), puts his in a Galvanized bucket, leaves it outside for a few days, then dumps it in his trash cans. But that's a whole 'nother thread ;)
 

Northern NH Mike

Burning Hunk
Nov 2, 2008
205
Northern NH
Has anyone made soap after using the ash to make the lye? I have been researching it and it looks like a laborious process that can go wrong and you are left with a runny greasy mess.
 

Ashful

Minister of Fire
Mar 7, 2012
16,939
Philadelphia
Did it once as a kid, either in summer camp at the museum or as a science class project. Can’t remember much from it today, other than yes… it was messy. I think the word we used at age 13 was “gross”.
 

TradEddie

Minister of Fire
Jan 24, 2012
954
SE PA
I've been experimenting with the idea that Lye might help corrode old stumps, so just before rain or snow I dump the ash bucket on top of several old oak stumps. It does appear to work, but like any chemical, it will restrict natural microbial decomposition, so it remains to be seen whether in the run long it helps at all. One stump remains untouched as a control. I'll get back to you all in ten years or so...

Otherwise I spread it on my lawn, a little in the compost, and I stuff as much as possible down the gopher holes, or whatever burrows all through my yard.

TE
 
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