Pine needle advice.

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This is the first place I have lived with so many pines! I have tons of pine needles in the shady areas. What could I do with them? Do they make good mulch?
 
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I have heard pine needles can make a good mulch but since they are biodegradable you will need to replace often. In your case, that might not be an issue. I also read that some plants (not sure why or which ones) can really benefit from pine needles. I have only seen a couple yards who use pine needles for mulch and it looked nice. I personally like red mulch because of the contrast in colors.
 
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I had a neighbor who had planted several pines specifically so he could much the needles to make the soil more acidic (so he could grow plants that did better in more acid soil than we had in that area).

I have also read that pine needles have vitamin c. Some people make a tea out of them to get rid of scurvy (I think that's the vitamin c deficiency disease). They may have other medicinal uses. Doing an internet search on the uses of pine needles might bring up something. If you do that, please share the results in this thread. I would be interested.
 
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I was surprised when I moved to Alabama, and found that people used pine needles for mulch, and even for garden paths to keep weeds down. People even ask for them on Craigslist .
I got some blueberries this year to plant, and apparently, they like pine needles ad acid soil, so we are going to run over some with the mulching mower, and plant a little in each hole when I plant the berries. Also, the article recommended using the needles as mulch around the berries, and said it will gradually disintegrate into the ground. I think roses also like acid soil, and I am going to see what other plants like it, because the pine needles can be used around any acid loving plants.
 
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I just picked up 24 bales of pine needles to use for my mulch, I picked them up in Georgia on my way home from florida as they are half the price down there than they are up here in KY. I use them in all my flower beds and tried them on my walking paths in my garden but they did not work out real well. The needles do decompose over time but the bigger issue I had was that they faded after being down on the ground for a year. M plan is to top dress in the fall to keep the color all year. The pine needles don't really add any acid to the soil, a study was done to prove this.
 
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The pine needles don't really add any acid to the soil, a study was done to prove this.

I didn't know this. What study was it? Do you have a link to it? I would be interested in looking at it.

When I used that to help my acid-loving plants, it didn't seem to help much, but I thought that was because I didn't have enough of it around my plants.
 
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Interesting ideas, everyone! Thanks! I wouldn't try them on pathways because they can be quite slick to walk upon. But, I can certainly use them as mulch! If I find other uses I will post about them here at a later date.
 
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Thank you for the links, Tmann.

I'm going to share the first link with a friend. He is an avid gardener (and very good at it), and I think he would like to read this.

I love your gardens and landscaping. I noticed you have several raised beds.

Ha! I didn't realize the last link was a different set of forums, and I could not figure out why I could not "like" it. I love the way you went into detail about how you did it.
 
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Antau I have 7 raised beds that I use for my vegetable garden. I put them in b/c my soil was nothing but clay where they are located at and I wanted a garden without waiting for the soil to become good. I have mixed thoughts about my raised beds, they are nice but at the same time I feel they limit me as to what I can do with the garden. I had thought about going down from 7 to 2 larger ones but still thinking about that. I have asparagus growing in one and this has been in that bed for 7 or so years, I get more asparagus than we can possibly eat and end up giving a bunch away.
 
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I love asparagus! Home-grown, that is. We had a small bed a long time ago. As far as I know it was volunteer.

That type of thing is what I like about raised beds - that one has more control over the type of soil one gardens in.
 

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