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Soil and Composting: poisonous plants in compost

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Forum: Soil and CompostingReplies: 3, Views: 11
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crockny
Kerhonkson, NY
(Zone 5a)

May 4, 2005
9:01 PM

Post #1448197

I'm new to Dave's garden -- this may already be answered somewhere but it seems too tedious to look through every thread! Sorry if I'm repeating ...

Some plants are listed as poisonous such as Monkshood, Foxglove, etc. Is it OK to put these in the compost bin? I grow vegetables with this compost too ...
maggiemoo
Conroe, TX
(Zone 9a)

May 13, 2005
4:37 AM

Post #1466400

C'mon, surely someone here has an answer. Is it alright to add Foxglove, etc to our compost piles? My guess is yes, since it would break down, just like weeds do. However, I've heard that you should never add Walnut leaves to compost because the tannic acid (or whatever it is that prevents things from growing) doesn't break down.

Any other thoughts?
drdon
Temecula, CA
(Zone 8b)

May 13, 2005
1:49 PM

Post #1466911

All greenwaste from your garden, including plants listed as poisonous are fine unless the toxin is considered persistent in soils. The microbes that decompose organic matter don't have the organs that digitalis affects. I've always thought our compost piles had heart but I've never seen a compost pile die from heart failure...lol.

Creosote bush and other plants rich in essential or non-volatile oils might pose a problem if they comprise a large percentage of the organic matter in a pile.

Yes it is true that earthworms have several hearts but they are not affected by digitalis in that their hearts pump through a different mechanism than ours.
maggiemoo
Conroe, TX
(Zone 9a)

May 13, 2005
2:24 PM

Post #1466973

Thanks drdon, I knew the answer would be here!

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