Hi i heard potash is a good feed for plants etc but is there a certain
type of wood i need to use? also can i use it straight the way after i
have made it?
Sorry i posted somewhere else on the forum but thought it maybe better
If you have a fireplace or a wood burning stove, all you need to do to make
potash is to burn wood to heat your house. You save the ashes from the
fireplace, sieve the ashes to removes the big chunks of charcoal, and then
spread the ashes round the garden in a light (and I do mean light - like
icing sugar [confectioners sugar in US] on the top of a cake. don't waste
the charcoal, crush it and spread that too as it's 'biochar' and good for
All wood has some potash. It probably does vary from species to species but
since gardeners used ashes for millenia and couldn't buy a nice plastic bag
of potash and they still managed to garden, I don't think it matters a
tinker's damn what level of potash the wood has.
It's easier to buy it in the form of Potassium sulphate, which you should be
able to buy in a good garden shop. In case you were concerned this is an
approved input under most organic systems. You can make your own by burning
wood but its messy and the resulting ash is quite alkaline which may not
suit your garden. Yes it could be used straight away once it is cool. In
either case apply in small quantities and water in well.
Careful, there's more than one "potash":
More specific to your question here:
I'm lucky here to have lots of live oaks on my 5 acres. Trick is to get the
fire hot enough for all to burn so you don't have to mess with any
half-burned stuff removal.
My dad made lye soap a few times when I was young. I remember its not so
good aroma, and how it lightly burned the skin while bathing. In the eyes
or on an open wound was very painful.
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