I've seen suggestions for using newspaper for mulch and weed control.
No doubt this works, but I've always been concerned about toxins and
heavy metal build up.
Should I worry about this or is ink and newsprint safe these days?
So far as I know, newspapers are all using soy-based ink, so no concern
about heavy metals, etc. You could certainly ask your local printers to be
sure. I use it quite a bit, covered with mulch hay/grass
clippings/whatever, then just till it in at season's end.
Gary Woods AKA K2AHC- PGP key on request, or at home.earthlink.net/~garygarlic
Zone 5/6 in upstate New York, 1420' elevation. NY WO G
I have a similar question regarding used Xerox copy paper. I have that in
abundance, and have been using it several layers thick as a kill mulch, but
I am concerned that the paper might not be good for the soil. Does anyone
know about copy paper?
As far as I know, there is nothing particularly special about copy paper
these days. (I remember when "plain paper copier" was the new and
wonderful thing about copiers, so that may not have always been so.)
The black toner pigment is carbon and iron oxides. The carrier consists
of a resin with waxes and agents that respond to electrostatic charge.
I haven't any qualms about composting my shredded copy paper. Changing
the toner cartridge and cleaning the laser printer expose me to far more
toner than might come back to me from the entire gardening process.
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