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  #1  
Old July 27th, 2008, 09:55 PM
hippychic37 hippychic37 is offline
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Princeton Gold Maple problems

I have a 12ft princeton gold maple that is suffering again this year. Very healthy when purchased from the garden center I work at!!!! Planted properly good soil & drainage. Mulched. In full sun as was recommended. Watered deeply once a week..although we have had alot of rain lately. Have a very heavy clay soil, but dug a more than sufficient size hole, new triple mix & bone meal. This year as last... some winter damage. The leader actually died. Came out beautiful though.very bright yellow leaves...then increasingly...noticed insect damage..picked off some tent caterpillars....& again the upper yellow leaves are all bleaching out. Lots of leaves seem scorched on edges..some brown spots....tree looks unhappy. Lots of faded leaves....underside seems darker lime green. Haven't noticed any leaves drop to the ground yet. Last year a few did but not all. It was fertilized this spring with Miracle Grow spikes put in properly away from trunk. Have had it looked at by 4 people with 25yrs experience..no-one has the answer. It was suggested that maybe it should be moved into partial shade....& using a systemic fungcide. Any suggestions??? I can send a pic tomorrow. This tree was planted last spring07. Mabye just in shock?? I really love it.
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Old July 27th, 2008, 10:05 PM
Ron B Ron B is offline
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

Multiple errors mentioned in your description, including

- Replacing existing soil with a planting mix (unless the entire potential rooting area for many years was replaced, rather than just a planting hole sized area)

- Fertilizing with bone meal

- Fertilizing with tree spikes

- Suggestion of applying a fungicide without a specific reason for doing so

As the roots go, so goes the whole tree. Investigate and review soil situation you have created to see if this is the cause of all or part of problems being seen with top. Excavating and replacing a heavy clay soil with a coarser soil can turn the planting hole into a collection point for water. This could result in pathogenic infestations causing such things as top dieback and leaf scorch. Otherwise this cultivar does not remain a strong yellow all summer anyway, it is true that it retains some yellowishness but not the same bright yellow as in spring.

http://www.puyallup.wsu.edu/~Linda%2...les/index.html
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Old July 27th, 2008, 10:43 PM
hippychic37 hippychic37 is offline
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

not sure what you mean by replacing existing soil with a garden mix(soil w/manure/peat. A 4foot wide hole all around was dug...with bone meal in the hole at time of planting making contact with roots. The spikes are a once a season feed. Have planted 100 trees all this way on our property & all are thriving but this one. The fungacide was suggested because of the brown spot. If you are suggesting the soil I used is wrong.what would you recommend?
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Old July 27th, 2008, 10:50 PM
Ron B Ron B is offline
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

Same soil texture throughout rooting area and not pockets of different material (4' wide for a tree is a pocket). Other trees grew DESPITE pit planting procedure, use of bone meal etc. rather than because of it. Amending of planting hole backfill is thought to be beneficial because after roots of newly planted trees and shrubs escape the amended hole and root into the unmodified natural soil beyond, top growth increases. Healthy stock, if not damaged first by conditions in amended planting hole will root out of planting holes within a year after planting.

See links at above site for more information about planting methods, bone meal and other topics.
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Old July 28th, 2008, 01:42 AM
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

Quote:
Excavating and replacing a heavy clay soil with a coarser soil can turn the planting hole into a collection point for water
This is absolutely right and is a major cause of problems with planting in clay soils
Ron ... why do you consider the addition of some bone meal to the planting hole to be a problem?
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Old July 28th, 2008, 10:30 AM
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

hi see good the trunk ,have a hole ?or big branch have a hole?if yes the cause for not good health of you prigo is a caterpillar that made a gallery in the trunk...
i have prigo (i posted in maples gallery see under)and another platanoides , grown good with a moderate watering,in total sun...for the hole i add a little 15/20% of new soil
because the soil of nursery is different of my land , is a small help for the new life without pot...
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Old July 28th, 2008, 03:57 PM
Ron B Ron B is offline
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

See above link for a discussion of bone meal, it's in the list of links that appears on the page that opens.

>i add a little 15/20% of new soil
because the soil of nursery is different of my land , is a small help for the new life without pot<

Use no soil amendments except in very specific conditions of raised or amended beds for plants with very limited root systems. If the existing soil is very poor, remove and replace with good field soil or place at least six inches of good field soil on the surface. However, you should match soil types as backfilling with good sandy loam in a heavy clay will serve as a collection point for water and the roots will suffocate. Soils amendments in a small planting hole do not assist plant establishment and growth. It is better to use the amendments as a mulch. The only exception is where the entire plant root zone for many years can be amended

--Whitcomb, Establishment and Maintenance of Landscape Plants (1987, Revised 1991, Lacebark Inc., Stillwater)

Last edited by Ron B; July 29th, 2008 at 08:42 AM.
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  #8  
Old July 29th, 2008, 06:58 AM
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

"It was suggested that maybe it should be moved
into partial shade....& using a systemic fungcide.
"

I think some photos showing the entire tree and
the leaf symptoms you are concerned about may
be in order. I am curious as to why a few people
felt this tree may need a systemic fungicide.
That certainly is not a good omen for the tree
right at a second transplanting when your main
issue may be that the roots are not well developed
yet to support the top growth as it is. With Winter
injury to the tree there may also be some concern
about root injury as well. Why risk further injury
to the roots or risk some root growth suppression
with a soil applied fungicide drench to what may
be an already weakened root system or a root
system that may not be developed enough yet to
adequately support the rest of the tree?

One thing to keep in mind is that nursery people
and the intellectuals do not always agree in how
a tree should be planted in the ground. A lot of
times the intellectuals got their views from soils
in their areas only - not really aware of how their
concepts work in other areas with different soils
than their prevalent soils and perhaps other soil
limiting factors. What may pertain to how we go
about planting trees in the ground in Florida with
a clay loam based calcareous soil is going to
differ in the method that may work for our area.
Then again what nursery people do not always
take into consideration is the possible range of
soil types in a given area, even on the same
property. So what may be okay for advice for
a sandy loam with no soil obstructions for a Maple
may not be the same advice that would apply
20 x 20 feet away with the same soil type with
an underlying and compacted clay layer. One
tree may require amending at transplant and
the other tree may only need to be backfilled
with the same soil dug out when the planting
hole was made.

A heavy clay soil tells me some things but
does not tell me what I would want to know
and that is the infiltration rate of the water,
the percolation rate of the water and with
with the latter is there any standing water
in the root zone for any length of time.
Having the roots being able to breathe
is of considerable, dire importance. The
Whitcomb reference that Ron supplied
is reasonable for what was, at that time,
unconventional thinking for certain growing
areas but later on through methodology
became conventional wisdom that could
be applied to many areas.

Jim
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Old July 29th, 2008, 08:46 AM
Ron B Ron B is offline
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

Whitcomb and others got similar results from amending of planting hole backfill regardless of type of amendment used, soil type or geographic location. It is a fundamental point: if you give the backfill a different texture from the surrounding soil by amending the backfill sufficiently to produce this affect then how water moves into and out of the planting hole is also often affected in an undesirable way. Since changing the texture of the backfill is one of the main objectives of amending planting holes, materials and amounts that will change the texture are usually used.

In 1970, a study was begun to try to determine the optimum amount of organic matter to add to the planting hole to aid establishment of woody plants. The study was conducted on the sand soils of North Florida using Canadian peat, vermiculite, pine bark, and colloidal phosphate (a clay-like material that holds considerable water), each at rates of 0%, 10%, 20%, 30%, 40%, and 50% by volume of the planting hole...

There was no benefit from any soil amendments at any rate either in the irrigated or non-irrigated area. Pine bark and to some degree, peat, restricted plant growth. Vermiculite had neither a beneficial nor detrimental effect. Colloidal phosphate was somewhat beneficial but inconsistent. All plants with all treatments in the irrigated plots were larger than those in the non-irrigated plots. However, the plant response to the treatments were about the same


--Whitcomb, Establishment etc. (1991 revised edition)

http://www.lacebarkinc.com/establish.htm
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Old July 29th, 2008, 10:11 AM
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whis4ey whis4ey is offline
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

Linda Chalker's CV certainly reads well, but I see that even she has caveats to add to what Ron would have us believe are absolute fundamentals for plant happiness
I myself have only about 50 years experience as a gardener, and I have never found the time to conduct studies that seem to prove one thing, and a few years later are contradicted by another
I agree with Alex ... some amendment to the planting hole has always been a good system of work so far as I am concerned. It helps to get the plant off to a good start. I am not suggesting a total change of soil for just a small hole, with the plant to struggle shortly afterwards to send out roots. I am sure neither is Alex. I use a common sense approach for every different planting situation. Some bone meal added to the planting hole has never had any detrimental effect so far as I am aware, and it is something I have done for a long time and will continue to do as I really do believe that it has some beneficial benefits. I see that Linda Chalker even admits that her own views apply only to non agricultural soils. In this country practically every garden has been agricultural for many years before being developed. Surely the situation is the same in the States and elsewhere?
For every 'intellectual's' viewpoint, there are a dozen conflicting sources of information. The moral of the story is that, just because you read it on the internet, doesn't mean it is true :)
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Old July 29th, 2008, 10:44 AM
Ron B Ron B is offline
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

It is important to note that during these studies there were few, if any, visual signs of stress, deficiencies, or other problems. The plants with amended soils were simply smaller. This is probably why the practice persisted for so long unchallenged or unquestioned. If all the plants on a site received peat in the planting hole and there is no comparison without peat, all appear to be fine. It is also important to note that few plants died from the soil amendment treatments in any of these studies, thus success or failure is not at question, simply degree of success (and, of course, money spent). It is also of interest that there is no "magical" treatment to make a poor subsoil clay into a productive soil

--Whitcomb (1991)
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Old July 29th, 2008, 08:44 PM
barb1948 barb1948 is offline
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

How can I emai a question to Mr.Shep?
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  #13  
Old July 30th, 2008, 08:11 AM
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

clik on nick mr.shep! opps
is only avaible option private message
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Old July 30th, 2008, 08:21 AM
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

Sam, one thing that some people in a
forum format are hard headed about
is that planting or growing practices
that have worked for others may not
apply to them. What we do not want
to hear is someone telling us what
has worked well for us is a don't do
when they themselves have not done
it or have yet tried to do it. There
can be some major differences in
how we may want to go about planting
trees in a landscape or a home garden
as opposed to planting fruit or nut
bearing trees for commercial purposes.

For many years it was taught around
here to place fertilizers in the bottom
of the hole prior to placing the tree
in the hole at planting. For many
trees this was not a problem but for
a few trees it was a precursor for the
trees demise when methane gas built
up in the planting hole with no means
to escape killed off root systems and
later killed off the tree. Also, what we
may do ourselves may not be the advice
that we may give others. As in Maples,
I will plant them right into the hot sun
and warm winds without protection but
I cannot recommend to others that they
do this method of placing the tree right
into harms way. I know what I want from
the tree when I do it and I have some
knowledge of what that tree should
do in that location but others simply
do not know what they are getting into.
So we have to side with caution rather
than pass along planting tips that they
may not be able to get satisfactory
results from their trees later on.

I think from the Whitcomb reference
that bone meal was not being ill advised
when used as a top dress. I've used
Cottonseed meal as a top dress for
a commercial Citrus grove for many
years. I would not be opposed to
using bone meal or Cottonseed meal
as a soil amendment but for me here
to do that I'd want to place the backfill
back into the hole, set my tree on top
of the backfill and then I can fill in
the rest of the hole with a hand mixed
Cottonseed meal amended backfill
to use as my soil to fill in the rest
of the hole. Personally, I would not
place bone meal at the bottom of the
hole but others have and have had
good results for them. It gets back
to the old adage, if it works for you,
why change it!

Jim
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Old July 30th, 2008, 11:46 AM
Ron B Ron B is offline
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

The one talking about bone meal at above link is Chalker-Scott, who concludes with

• Bone meal supplies high levels of phosphorus and calcium, elements that are rarely limiting in
non-agricultural soils.
• Phosphorus, from bone meal or other sources, does not “stimulate” plant growth; it is only a
mineral, not a plant growth regulator.
• High levels of phosphorus, from bone meal or other sources, will inhibit growth of mycorrhizal
fungi.
• Without mycorrhizal partners, plants must put additional resources into root growth at the
expense of other tissues and functions.
• Before you add any supplementary nutrients to your landscape, have a complete soil test
performed first.

http://www.puyallup.wsu.edu/~Linda%2...s/Bonemeal.pdf
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Old July 30th, 2008, 05:26 PM
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

"It is better to use the amendments as a mulch."

I believe this would include bone meal.

We can play a tit for tat game if you want with
the bulleted information. The only statement
of those listed that is completely true is the last
one. Then again how to interpret the results may
require someone else that does not already have
an agenda or the notion that various residual
nutrients and minerals in the soil are not needed
by the plant to promote growth. Ever heard of
locked up nutrients in a soil and why the plant
cannot readily utilize them?

Why even have the testing done for landscape
trees if there is an inherent negative, built in
variable, with each and every mineral and nutrient
under the auspices that they do not act like a plant
growth regulator? How many do act like a plant
growth regulator anyway?

In each of the other statements errors of oversight
have been mentioned. As an example: there are
European soils that are deficient in Calcium and
Phosphorous so I guess using bone meal as a soil
amendment will not be useful since Phosphorous
does not stimulate growth by Linda's assessment.
Tell that to an Apple, Pear, or a Cherry grower in
Washington that applied Calcium and Phosphorous
are not needed or tell it to a Citrus grower in Texas
that those Texans are being foolish to apply Calcium
nitrate as a fertilizer to inadvertently suppress a leaf
chlorosis condition. Of which the advanced chlorosis
can in turn restrict the sizing of the fruit as well as
the quality of the fruit upon maturity and along with
reductions in yields combined with lower expected
monetary returns.

Phosphorous not needed to grow Alfalfa huh?

Okay, why it is that much of the Oregon soils
are severely lacking in available Calcium in
their soils and why is it that Calcium carbonate
applied to the soil helps with their Manganese
issues they have with their field grown Maples?

Mycorrhizal fungi are not seen in the soil in warm
to hot areas - big time error of oversight. As an
example, let's use a well known Citrus growing
nursery near San Jose that gets all kinds of fungal
activity in his rootstocks when grown indoors, in
an atmospheric controlled room (not grown in a
greenhouse) and then buds his scions onto those
rootstocks and grows them on in the same facility.
What happens to the mycorrhizal fungi as soon as
he takes the trees outdoors and places those trees
on a shade cloth covered area? Do I really need
to tell where did the mycorrhizal fungi vanish to
in such short order and why? Why is it that this
prominent Citrus grower gave up on re-inoculating
mycorrhizal fungi once the trees are outdoors?
He does not need them now as was said to me, he
got what he wanted earlier along in the rootstocks
development. I agree with him. By the way,
Sulfur is far more injurious to mycorrhizal fungi
than Phosphorous. Tell that to a production field
Tomato grower that Phosphorous is killing their
mycorrhizal fungi when they were not expecting
any measurable mycorrhizal activity in their
plants where they are to begin with.

What is the ability of Calcium that when readily
absorbed by the roots or even by the leaves and
is translocated throughout the plant aids in helping
to limit the spread of Verticillium alboatrum in a
Maple? Calcium is not needed huh? I just gave
a few companies the best reason in the world to
promote their fungicidal products and they don't
even have to know the answer to the question.

It is true that areas that have excess residual
forms of Calcium in their soils can be injurious
to some trees such as Pin Oak, some of the
variegated Dogwoods and certain golden
needled Conifers but to preclude the usage
of applied Calcium for other plants stating
there is enough Calcium in the soil already
is just plain being silly.

Jim
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Old July 30th, 2008, 07:58 PM
Ron B Ron B is offline
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

Bone meal wouldn't be used for mulch, it doesn't have the right texture and is chosen for its nutrient content and used as a fertilizer.
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Old July 31st, 2008, 01:33 AM
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

Aw come on Ron. I am sure Mr Shep knows what a mulch is
Isn't it clear that it is being suggested that the amendments should be added as part of the mulch?
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Old July 31st, 2008, 10:58 AM
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

i repeat: if one garden man ,plant one native maple ,for ex.acer Opalus in Italy this maple grown really good ,with poor care ,but if i buy acer Davidii origin est world i prefers add a little sand ,mature fertilize of cow,pine bark.after 10 years that i grown
maple this is my direct experience...
ciao
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Old July 31st, 2008, 12:12 PM
Ron B Ron B is offline
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

No controls = no basis for comparison. It's basic experimental methodology. If you plant a tree or some trees and give them all the same treatment, you don't know for sure that it helped unless you have a matching set of untreated ones present to tell you what would have happened at the same time and place, with the same subjects without the treatment.
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Old August 2nd, 2008, 05:09 PM
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

I'm trying something I read in a magazine that makes sense to me with my Tennessee clay soils (which in my case drain fine - I'm on a hill 120ft. above the valley floor):

1.) DO NOT dig a planting hole. Take bags of high quality potting soil and make a raised mound on top of the ground. Make it thick. This should be quite a wide mound for a single plant.

2.) Plant your selected cultivars.

3.) Add mulch (I use pine straw).

4.) Keep watered appropriately.

5.) Let nature go to work.

In 2 years supposedly the earthworms will have worked the potting soil and organic matter into the clay underneath. Add compost each year to the mound before topping off with mulch and your plants will have great soil, aqequate nutrients, and you never turned a shovel. There will be no issue with planting hole ammendments or forming a 'bathtub' for your plants.

This intrigued me a bit. Aside from PH, the organic content of the soil seems to be the most important issue for healthy plants. Sandy soil is improved by it, as is clay soil. Putting nature to work mixing it all together makes the most sense of all. Earthworms dig deep tunnels between the surface and lower soil layers, and function as natural soil movers / mixers.

So, I did this on the northeast side of my house as an experiement. I made a large raised bed entirely of store-bought potting soil. I used several different types to get a good blend of materials and mixed it all together. I then planted hostas, begoinias, ferns, and an A.s. 'Aureum - Full Moon' maple of considerable size. I mulched it all with pine straw and then added a box of earthworms from the bait store just to kick-start the whole thing. Now, time will tell if this is a viable approach...

On the arguments about the fine details of nutrients or ammendments - if your plants are healthy what's the issue? If not, then dig deeper and find the cause. There would never be one answer or best practice on this, because every soil, climate, and growing requirement will vary, depending on the situation.

Regards,
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Old August 3rd, 2008, 07:59 AM
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

Kaitain4, please give us an update now and then -- I'm most interested in how well this plays out in the long run, especially with the Acer shirasawanum 'Aureum.'

I feel right now as though my entire garden is an experiment in soil development. There is virtually no natural soil in any of the cleared area near the house -- though the site is surrounded by undisturbed woodland and wetland that has not been cut or drained for many decades.

The "soil" near the house consists mostly of some kind of terrible, compacted builder's fill that seems to be a mixture of rocks and sand. In some places, the original soil that was excavated for the foundation hole has been bulldozed and flattened and compressed under the weight of heavy equipment. The exact composition of the fill seems to vary from one spot to the next, as does the depth to which roots need to penetrate to encounter the natural soil or subsoil buried underneath.

All things considered, I'm quite pleased with how well the maples (and other plants) are doing. I've mostly planted them with minimal soil amendments and inoculated the roots with a mixture of mycorrhizae and bacteria that I got from the local garden center, and I feed them with either seaweed extract alone or mixed with fish emulsion. Apart from that, I mulch and re-mulch them with every kind of organic debris that falls out of the surrounding woodland or otherwise accumulates (such as grass trimmings) and I'm hoping nature will take it from there.
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Old August 3rd, 2008, 09:49 AM
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Re: Bone meal & mulch

No, Bone meal in most arid locales was used
for many years to add organic matter into the
soil. Upon incorporation into the soil substrate
or the soil medium, for container plants, we get
some added oxygenation into the soil from it
upon degradation. In more recent years people
tend to look at the soil amendment issue solely
as a means to incorporate nutrients into the soil,
which was a tertiary benefit from meals for a
long time. Primary importance should still be
considered to add in organic matter.

At one time mulches were considered to be a
soil amendment and they will be upon breakdown
rather that soil amendments now being thought of
as being a mulch. The two are not the same at all
but the methodology in some areas can be applied
the same - wanting the same thing from both but
the initial reasoning for using a mulch was not the
same for many years as using a soil amendment
was for a lot of people.

Mulches were not used simply to add in organic
matter to a soil. Green mulches and even green
manure crops could harm tender, young, root
systems - as an example: Oat stubble disced
in and used as organic matter for a later field
Tomato planting could harbor fungi that could
cause some damping off issues of the seedling
Tomatoes once germinated. We do not want that.
Also, Corn stubble disced into the ground could
harbor yellows viruses that could easily get in the
Tomato plants system and cause all kinds of trouble.
In neither case was the stubble used as a mulch per
say as they were thought of at the time as adding
in organic matter to a soil but we can get a water
holding mulching effect from both stubble but
we also have to be very mindful in what crop is
grown next as part of a crop rotation pattern. In
neither case was the stubble considered a soil
amendment but the gypsum that was spread over
the ground soon after the stubble was disced in
was considered to be a soil amendment.

Bone meal does have application to Maples at
planting time as well as for container grown
plants. The amount we apply in both cases
is what may determine if we have any dilatory
affects but when mixed in with soil, even a half
to half ratio used as a secondary fill (from the
surface of the root ball upwards to fill a planting
hole) we should have enough quick breakdown
to not worry too much about using it. In some
of the Pacific Northwest soils I see adding in
Bone meal as a topical applied soil amendment
as being a rather prudent thing to do in areas that
are lacking in organic matter content to their soils,
such as in Medford and in some areas of Bend and
Baker as well. Tundra soils such as in between
Weed and Yreka, California, could get benefit
from having meals spread over their soils and
lightly worked in that will not only improve
their water infiltration rates by lessening their
amount of standing water but will add in free
oxygen later on to the already oxygen deprived
compacted soil.

Jim
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  #24  
Old August 3rd, 2008, 01:08 PM
Kaitain4's Avatar
Kaitain4 Kaitain4 is offline
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

Kaspian,

Builders are notorious for destroying the soil around homes. I had the luxury of building my own home, and I did not allow ANY heavy equipment on the site. My brother and I marked out the outline of the home and hand-cut the trees that had to come out. I then had a small backhoe come pull out the stumps, which were hauled off the property. We caged off key trees to keep workers, cars and machines away; and we cleaned up the job site regularly to prevent the buildup of unwanted materials that would just get buried in the soil had they been allows to remain. After construction, I replaced or heavily amended all the soil in front of the house and created several raised berms of good topsoil , which I had brought in.

I'm hopeful my little experiment works as well. The native soil here has a rich top layer, though it is thin, perhaps 2-3". Then we have about 18" of a lighter colored soil which is where I think earthworms have worked in all the leaf litter for many years. This isn't especially rich soil, but its definitely better than what lies beneath, which is thick, hard, red clay. Only the big tree roots can penetrate that stuff. So if my earthworms can get that top 18" enriched by turning in the potting soils, I'll be way ahead.


Regards,
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  #25  
Old August 4th, 2008, 07:10 AM
kaspian kaspian is offline
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Re: Princeton Gold Maple problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaitain4 View Post
... So if my earthworms can get that top 18" enriched by turning in the potting soils, I'll be way ahead.
Were these any particular kind of earthworms? I'm very intrigued by this idea.
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