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Thread: My bog mulching idea

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    Unhappy

    Hi everyone. Since it has been getting very cold outside i've been trying to come up with a good overwinter mulching idea for my small in the ground bog. At first i was planning on covering the entire bog surface with about a foot of straw. Then i read that straw can rot and spread mold to the plants. Plus it would be a huge pain to clean up in the spring. So then i thought about using pine needles but these would leave an even harder mess to clean up. Then i really started thinking and i came up with a pretty good idea. First off, I put rocks around the edge of my bog to make it more attractive and to cover up the excess liner. These rocks are about a foot higher than the bog's surface. So i thought that i would buy a few sheets of that blue sheet foam that is used to insulate houses, and put it flat over the top of the rocks. Then i would cover the foam and rocks with some plastic sheeting and cover the entire thing with about a foot of straw. Does this sound like it would provide good insulation from below freezing temps?? Also when would be the best time to do this?? I live in zone 5 and we're having highs in the 40's and lows in 20's and 30's right now. I was thinking that maybe early Dec. would be the best time. Thanks!!!

    -buckeye

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    Bump.

    I don't know anything about this but it would be nice to hear the opinions of other, more experienced, CPers. I would like to create a bog garden and mulching this way would be very convenient.

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    I wouldn't do it; the plants need light year round. Sarracenia flava needs light, as it makes "phyllodia" (sort of trapless leaves) to capture sunlight in winter.
    Pine needles work well, and break down to form part of the substrate. Look at the bogs and savannahs in eastern NC, SC, and GA; all of them (or most) have pines widely spaced, and the plants are covered in the needles each year. Pine needles, with their high acidity, do not foster fungus growth, and add to the acidity of the soil. Maybe I better get some...
    Alex Netherton

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    Moderator Schmoderator Fluorescent fluorite, England PlantAKiss's Avatar
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    I think anything that deeply covers the plants totally would be risky for mold or fungus breeding. Air circulation is important in preventing that. A layer of pine needs wouldn't hurt as Alex just mentioned. They get covered in pine needles in nature all the time...just maybe not to a foot deep.

    Also I wouldn't worry too much about the cold temps...yours don't sound that severe. My pitcher plants are outdoors year 'round even in freezing temps and they have been fine. But it also depends on what type of plants are in your bog.

    I thought of putting pine needles around mine too but I haven't done it yet.

    Good luck!
    "Fox terriers are born with about four times as much original sin in them as other dogs." - Jerome K. Jerome

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    Nepenthes Specialist nepenthes gracilis's Avatar
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    I will usually go lop off a few hemlock branches and throw them over the Sarracenia bogs and pots outside the greenhouse. I find hemlock much more acidic than pine, due to the fact Cypripedium acaule seems to prefer hemlock areas more than pine indicating increased acidity, and they are easier to clean up than pine needles. [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html312/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif[/img]

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    Hi everyone,

    Quote Originally Posted by [b
    Quote[/b] ]Also I wouldn't worry too much about the cold temps...yours don't sound that severe. My pitcher plants are outdoors year 'round even in freezing temps and they have been fine. But it also depends on what type of plants are in your bog.
    The temps I listed were what it was back in November. Now in Jan. it has gotten a lot colder. The high today is suppose to be 18 and right now it's 10 out. This whole week is suppose to only have highs in the 20's.

    I've already mulched the bog the way i said back at the start of Dec. About 3 weeks later I uncovered the bog and everything looked very good. I'll probably uncover it every couple of weeks for a few hours on days when it's warmer out since you guys raised a good point about the low air circulation. The reason i put the sheeting over the top was so rain and melting snow wouldn't get in and make the soil saturated. Thanks,

    -buckeye

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