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Chop and drop weeding/thinning on wood chips mulch

 
Tord Helsingeng
Posts: 4
Location: Elverum, Norway, sub-arctic to temperate zone
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Is this a good idea?

I have a patch of raspberries and thought while thinning and weeding them just to use the cuttings as mulch between the rows.
I have already mulched with wood chips.

Thanks for any insights.
 
Todd Parr
Posts: 673
Location: Wisconsin, zone 4
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I chop and drop onto the woodchips I plant in and it works well. I haven't noted any problems.
 
Tord Helsingeng
Posts: 4
Location: Elverum, Norway, sub-arctic to temperate zone
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Thank you for your reply!
 
Todd Parr
Posts: 673
Location: Wisconsin, zone 4
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You're very welcome.
 
Robin Duchesneau
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That's what I do; I see my garden beds (originally created with wood chips) as compost piles. Once I harvest the veggies I cut the plants at the base and spread them on top, when I cut the grass I add a small layer, etc. I never pull the plants out, because I don't want to disturb the root system. Heck, I even will leave some veggies to decompose on the pile (I see it as a form of respect for the reproductive efforts of the plant world). Sometimes I get crops that volunteer this way; it's nature's way to surprise me!
 
Bryant RedHawk
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Posts: 2002
Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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When chopping and dropping Raspberry or Blackberry, be sure to let the canes dry out completely before putting anything on top of them.
When we first started clearing Buzzard's Roost (we had two acres of wild Blackberry canes mixed in with Sumac, small hickory and oak trees) we were chopping and piling canes.
It was only two weeks before we noticed the chopped canes were sprouting new growth.
Now we chop and dry the canes before using them in mulch or putting into composting heaps, no more Blackberry sprouts from the chopped canes.

We use the chop/ drop a lot and still have around a half acre of canes growing. It takes a full season of chopping, each time the little buggers sprout back, to get the roots to die from exhaustion.
We don't let them go for long, once they show up we whack them down (some areas we do it once a week, when the rains don't come it can be three weeks before re-sprout).

The dried canes make great mulch and they decompose well in the heaps too. They have increased several nutrient levels in our compost, such as; phosphorus, magnesium and manganese.
These are the main increases that I can attribute to just the Blackberry canes through chemical analysis.
 
Matu Collins
Posts: 1976
Location: Southern New England, seaside, avg yearly rainfall 41.91 in, zone 6b
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My only concern would be prickly unclear paths. Are you planning to walk where you will be chopping and dropping? I have found that the more obvious the paths are, the better. Visitors are likely to step into the beds if the paths look lumpy and prickly.
 
2017 Permaculture Design Course at Wheaton Labs
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