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Arbor Vitae in Hugelkultur?

 
Posts: 97
Location: Long Island, NY
12
hugelkultur forest garden food preservation
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Hi folks,

When Sandy hit us a number of years ago, we were lucky not to lose any of our big kids on the property. Every single oak stood strong, even though a tornado came over the top of the hill (we are nestled in a forest knoll) and took down a swath of 100 foot tall oaks and other hardwoods about 100 yards wide and half a mile long, circling right around our property in a circle.

Along our back fence, which is way too close to our back door neighbor, we planted a row of arbor vitae trees, which provided a good amount of privacy. They grew true and strong, but the storm did in 3 of them, and since we were unemployed at the time (for 5 years....yeah) and they didn't hit our house and could be covered by insurance, they have stayed laying on their sides, and happily living for all this time, cutting off the entire side yard, which I am now reclaiming.

Long story short, lol the blue jay nestlings have flown from the back of the house, which have held me back from chainsawing these three trees into chunks and getting them the heck off my patio. Planting native cedars in their place because dayum none of these trees do well in the snow when they get over twenty feet tall.

Anyway, long story for a short question. I have heard NOT to use cedar in a hugelkultur--don't know why. I also wonder if Arbor Vitae, which is obviously not a native cedar, but rather similar is also a no=no in hugels? I want to get rid of these trees and move on to patio clean up, and if I can use them in a hugel I want to do that.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!
 
pollinator
Posts: 247
Location: Unincorporated Pierce County, WA Zone 7b
26
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Cedar is naturally resistance to bacterial and fungal decay, which means it isn't going to go through the nice breakdown process in your pile.   Perhaps better chipped as a top layer and placed around the new trees as mulch?
 
Alexandra Clark
Posts: 97
Location: Long Island, NY
12
hugelkultur forest garden food preservation
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It really is interesting that people say that, because about 15 years back, I had two arbor vitaes my mom gave me that died, or were they lehland cypress, I cant remember, and also an old christmas tree and I dragged them into the forest and piled oak leaves over them for a few seasons and then forgot them. I didn't do anything else to them.

My sister gave me some May apples from her forest and I I went to find a good place for them. There was a big flat patch of leaves in the forest and when I dug it was threaded through with beautiful orange and white strands of mycorhzae and mycellium, but no trees at all. LOL the forest ate them up!

Thanks for the feedback.
 
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