Pine chips in garden : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

Greetings! My friend raises rabbits and uses pine shavings in the cage pans.I was wondering if this could be used in the garden as is or would the shaveings have a negative effect on the soil. Would the pine have an acid effect on the soil? Would it brake down enough or would the shaveings build up and ruin the soil? Any help will be greatly appreciated he has about 3 pickup loads piled up! Many Thanks! Sincerly, Adrew

-- Andrew Nietfeldt (, May 12, 2001


Depends, What is your soil typ and ph level? If the shavings are semi composted should be ok, other wise the shavings will pull nitrogen out of soil until they break down a little[ even with manure]. If he has been stock piling it my guess is most should be usable.

-- kathy h (, May 12, 2001.

It is very common practice here (in New Zealand) to put pine wood and pine bark chips as a deep mulch on the garden. But Andrew you mention 'shaveings', if you mean wood shavings rather than chips I would be careful to check that they are not from treated wood.

-- john hill (, May 13, 2001.

I would use pine shavings compost for just a very few things, but definitely not in my garden. Too many tanins.

I suggest you supply your friend with something else: straw or hardwood shavings.

-- Paul Wheaton (, May 14, 2001.

I would limit to those plants that like acidic soil such as strawberries and blueberries.

-- Colleen (, May 14, 2001.

I have used soiled pine bedding in my garden extensively and have very rich soil as a result. In the late fall, winter and early spring I let my laying hens have the run of the garden, and put any soiled bedding directly on the garden. The hens scratch it in. The rest of the year I will either use the soiled bedding as side dressing (since it would be too hot fresh) or compost it for a couple months before using it. I use the composted bedding as mulch. I do end up applying lime in the fall to bring the pH up. I also use other mulch and compost as well. I use my own rabbit manure with shavings, composted first. Rabbit manure is very rich stuff, but is also very hot. You should probably compost it for awhile.

-- Sheryl in ME (, May 14, 2001.

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