5 ways to use ashes in the garden – for composting, improving the soil, and more

What to do with ashes from a fireplace Is barbecue ash good for a garden? What can I do with pizza oven ash? We have been asked all of these questions lately – and this is no surprise. We all use grills, fire pits, and pizza ovens, and the question of what to do with the ashes has come up a lot. But did you know that the leftover ash can be used well in the garden?

Ash is full of surprising properties that can increase your acidic soil, compost heat, and pest repellancy, among other things – meaning using ash in the garden is the perfect way to reduce waste and improve plant health.

See: Ideas for the backyard – Design ideas for your garden, regardless of size or style

Here, experts reveal five ways to safely and effectively use leftover ash in your garden – we can hardly believe their rich benefits.

Using ash in the garden – our top 5

Before we start, Jon Butterworth at Arada stoves reminds us to store our ashes away from the elements in order to preserve their beneficial water-soluble minerals that they could quickly lose in the event of rain.

“Embers can stay hot for days, so make sure your wood ash is completely cool before using it in your garden or home,” he adds.

And a safety advice from us: If you empty your ashes into a container, make sure that it is heat-resistant and not made of plastic.

1. Put ashes in compost to help the plants

Perhaps the most significant, but surprising, benefit of recycling leftover ash is in your compost heap.

Yes, “adding layers of ash to your compost pile will help break down the organic compounds and speed up the composting process,” said co-founder and design director of WOOD STEEL, Alex Waugh. He goes on to say that ashes also help keep odor down and control the number of insects they attract, especially in warmer weather.

See: Monty Don’s warning about compost – take his advice or risk attracting rats

“When you use your ashes in your compost heap, always make sure that the wood you burn doesn’t contain any chemicals such as preservatives, paints, or varnishes. We recommend using only dry, seasoned firewood for our fireplaces and fireplaces, ”adds Alex.

2. Is ash good for the ground? Yes it is

Ashes in the garden

Ash is a natural source of potassium and trace elements and can correct acidic soils because it has a liming effect.

“Wood ash is about 70% calcium carbonate, so it gives the same result as lime, but faster because the particle size is much smaller,” adds Alex.

See: Ways to use coffee grounds in the garden – extraordinary ways to increase your blooms

If the soil in your garden is acidic or low in potassium, wood ash can help – sprinkle it over the lawn and bury it in borders.

3. Use ashes in the garden to deter snails

Ashes in the garden

In addition to the horticultural advantages, we can also repel pests with our wood ash.

“Wood ash can also be used to ward off pests such as snails and ants. Sprinkle a small amount or wrestle around susceptible plants and reapply as rain can wash away the ashes and render them ineffective, ”shares Alex. This is further emphasized by Jon, who also suggests stopping snails by “creating a circle of ashes around plants they love to feast on”.

4. Create a chicken dust bath using ashes

Ashes in the garden

After tending to slugs and slugs, Jon shares how ash can be used as a chicken dust bath that combats other small pests; he suggests adding fine ash to their dust bath, which “helps kill mites, fleas and lice similar to kieselguhr. Give your poultry the spa treatment with a couple of scoops of ash sprinkled around the dust bath area, ”he adds.

It’s also worth noting that spraying chicken feed with clean wood ash can be good for egg-laying chickens.

5. Use ashes in the garden to clean the grill

Ashes in the garden, pizza oven with ashes

See: The best pizza ovens – our top picks to make the best ‘za’ for the home

After the fun of a garden party draws to a close, there is one more tedious task to complete and that is cleaning the grill. Like us, Jon doesn’t particularly like cleaning up, but he has a tip that will make the process smoother.

“Mix up a thick paste of ash and water and apply it liberally to your grids and the inside of the grill. The ash and water mix with the grease left over from the cooking process, creating a kind of natural soap that will help you clean up in no time, ”explains Jon.

We just wish we’d known earlier.