Tomatoville® Gardening Forums


Notices

A garden is only as good as the ground that it's planted in. Discussion forum for the many ways to improve the soil where we plant our gardens.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old July 22, 2015   #1
AlittleSalt
Tomatovillian™
 
AlittleSalt's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: Zone 8A Texas Heat Zone 9
Posts: 13,151
Default Newspaper for Raised Beds ?

I will be building at least five raised beds between October and January. My thought is to fill them with organic materials. I've read that newspaper is printed with a vegetable oil (Soy) based ink because it is cheaper - makes since to me.

So, what do you all think about using newspaper as an ingredient in raised bed garden soil?
__________________
Salt, AlittleSalt, Robert
AlittleSalt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 22, 2015   #2
kayrobbins
Tomatovillian™
 
kayrobbins's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Jacksonville, Fl
Posts: 822
Default

I don't use it as an ingredient but when I am building a new raised bed where there is grass, after I cut it back with my string trimmer I put layers of newspaper and then cardboard down. That smothers it out and is so an easy way to deal with it.
kayrobbins is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 22, 2015   #3
AlittleSalt
Tomatovillian™
 
AlittleSalt's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: Zone 8A Texas Heat Zone 9
Posts: 13,151
Default

Kay, that's exactly what we will be doing to the bottom of the beds. Right now, Bermuda grass and an even thicker weed is growing there. We will most likely use 2 x 12s to build them.
__________________
Salt, AlittleSalt, Robert
AlittleSalt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 22, 2015   #4
BigVanVader
Tomatovillian™
 
BigVanVader's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Greenville, South Carolina
Posts: 3,049
Default

I used it for the same thing, it works. I dont throw any paper away it all goes into the garden paths or beds.
BigVanVader is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 22, 2015   #5
dipchip2000
Tomatovillian™
 
dipchip2000's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Muskogee, Oklahoma
Posts: 660
Default

Use angle iron and screws on the corners. Nails will pull out as wood seasons and tries to twist. I used treated 2X12s and had to go back and put screws on corners. Much easier to do it to begin with.

ron
dipchip2000 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 23, 2015   #6
Redbaron
Tomatovillian™
 
Redbaron's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 4,481
Default

Newspaper used that way is fine. I have been told that the glossy colored magazine type pages shouldn't be used. But I have not been able to confirm this. I was able to confirm that regular newspaper is good to go.
__________________
Scott

AKA The Redbaron

"Permaculture is a philosophy of working with, rather than against nature; of protracted & thoughtful observation rather than protracted & thoughtless labour; & of looking at plants & animals in all their functions, rather than treating any area as a single-product system."
Bill Mollison
co-founder of permaculture
Redbaron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 25, 2015   #7
imp
Tomatovillian™
 
imp's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Wichita Falls, Texas
Posts: 4,373
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlittleSalt View Post
I will be building at least five raised beds between October and January. My thought is to fill them with organic materials. I've read that newspaper is printed with a vegetable oil (Soy) based ink because it is cheaper - makes since to me.

So, what do you all think about using newspaper as an ingredient in raised bed garden soil?

Newspapers are printed using soy inks, and they break down nicely n the soil. Don't use the "slick" pages- such as ads that are shiny and ultra smooth feeling, except in your walkways or as a weed barrier along with what ever else you want to use. The slick pages have been processed that makes them much slower to break down.

You can use thick layers at the bottom or tear it up/shredded paper right into the layers- it'll break down and worms love paper and cardboard scraps, as well as coffee grounds.
imp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 25, 2015   #8
rhines81
Tomatovillian™
 
rhines81's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Zone 5A, Poconos
Posts: 930
Default

You'd have to have tons of paper to fill one average bed (after it has decomposed). It takes up a lot of space initially and then you are probably left with less than a thimble full of matter per page after it decomposes. It takes a while for newspaper to break down completely also, so to use as a filler for soil, I don't know, better to use as a bottom liner.
The colored glossy paper contains heavy metals in the inks, not good. Normal newspaper ink is usually either soy or water based but it can also contain trace amount of toxins (probably not harmful).
rhines81 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 25, 2015   #9
imp
Tomatovillian™
 
imp's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Wichita Falls, Texas
Posts: 4,373
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by rhines81 View Post
You'd have to have tons of paper to fill one average bed (after it has decomposed). It takes up a lot of space initially and then you are probably left with less than a thimble full of matter per page after it decomposes. It takes a while for newspaper to break down completely also, so to use as a filler for soil, I don't know, better to use as a bottom liner.
The colored glossy paper contains heavy metals in the inks, not good. Normal newspaper ink is usually either soy or water based but it can also contain trace amount of toxins (probably not harmful).


I work for a newspaper, and all of our inks are soy inks. Don't know about other printed materials.

I did not mean use newspaper exclusively- almost nothing is as good by it's self as a mixture of things will be, especially in a raised bed.

Paper shreds will help with the "fluff" of the soil for a time, and help with the ability to hold water.

Sorry, not seeing where I advocated filling a whole bed with newspaper, can you show me just where I posted that?

Last edited by imp; August 25, 2015 at 08:27 PM. Reason: left out a couple words.
imp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 25, 2015   #10
rhines81
Tomatovillian™
 
rhines81's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Zone 5A, Poconos
Posts: 930
Default

I wasn't responding to your post imp. I was responding to the initial post where he was talking about using the newspaper as an ingredient. It just seemed that it was to be used as a substantial filler which just will not work without mass quantities, and then the soil quality would not be that great. It's good for a bottom liner and as an additive to compost piles, but I just don't see it as a soil mix ingredient.
rhines81 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 02:50 AM.


★ Tomatoville® is a registered trademark of Commerce Holdings, LLC ★ All Content ©2019 Commerce Holdings, LLC ★