Baking soda & lawn turf

I had an experience that you may need to know about. I keep baking soda in the refrigerator for odor control. When I removed it, for some reason I decided to broadcast it off the front porch. Now a few days later I've got a wide brown arc of dead grass where the baking soda settled on it. I guess the sodium in baking soda acts like the sodium in salt, huh?
Bob S.
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Bob S.) wrote:

In extremely dilute percentages (1% to 4% in oil or soapy water) bicarbonates are used as organic fungicide, pesticide, & for other garden purposes, & is by & large non-toxic, though it should even so be regarded as a harsh gardening chemical since bicarbonates can destroy the cell structure of plants, & can so alkalinize soil pH that nothing will grow.
It was formerly illegal to sell bicarbonates for use in gardens, but home-preparations were so popular that Congress was lobbied to make it legal for corporate interests to cash in on the popularity & package preparations explicitly for garden use. At the end of 1996, the EPA changed its sodium & bicarbonates regulations so that it could be sold for garden use. The change was strictly economic, not because hazards were suddenly discovered not to exist.
Because it has for so long been a traditional home cleaning & cooking chemical, with garden uses noted for about a century, people frequently don't think about the hazards, & don't keep it out of reach of children or pets. It can cause eye damage, lung damage if airborn particles are breathed in, gastrointestinal & renal illness if it is eaten pure, agravates edema, reacts with environmental phosphates & acids to release carbon dioxide, has volatile reactions to ammonium phosphates, & kills plant life, benificial insects, & benificial microorganisms. A one-time use of horticultural bicarbonates highly dilute & as directed on the labels would not stress a garden, but it can linger in the soil a long while & if used frequently will accumulate & become harmful. And of course as you saw, used undiluted it is a menace.
Watering the area you wrecked repeatedly & deeply should wash the chemical deeper into the soil & the area will recover.
-paghat the ratgirl
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One other use I've used for baking soda... is to poor it into a clogged sink and follow it up with Vinegar.
Someone made a volcano for a science fair project when I was in grade school by doing the same thing... the volcano was a jar covered in paper mache to make it look like a volcano, with an upside dunnel for the top, again decorated to make it volcanic looking, and removeable so as to be able to poor baking soda in, and then a side hose was used with a funnel to poor in vinegar to get the volcanic effects.
-- Jim Carlock Post replies to the newsgroup.
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The Onion (www.theonion.com) once ran a related story about Bill Nye the Science Guy (tv personality) being killed or injured in a vinegar/baking soda accident. :-)

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