Wood Ashes – Use as Plant Fertilizer

On a cold winter weekend, nothing is cozier than a fire in the fireplace. But when the fire has died, you’re faced with the chore of cleaning out the ashes and disposing of them. Rather than putting them in the garbage, why not spread them on your garden or lawn?

Wood ashes contain a small amount of nutrients that plants need. Compared to a bag of store-bought fertilizer, it’s not much, but your plants will appreciate the phosphorus and potassium just the same.

The major contribution of ashes is as a substitute for garden lime. Ashes and lime are both alkaline; they “sweeten” soil and make it less acidic. Ashes, though, are so alkaline that you wouldn’t want to apply too much to your soil.

A good rule of thumb is to spread no more than 20 pounds of ashes over 1,000 square feet of lawn or garden each year (10 pounds/1000 sq ft each six months).

Since preformed artificial fireplace logs are made from wood chips, their ashes can be used just as you would use “natural” ashes.

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