are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: fish guide On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 11:05 am

Are coal ashes ok to spread like fertilizer or lime on a lawn or vegetable garden? Is there anything chemically beneficial or harmful about them?
fish guide
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: harmon TLC 2000

Re: are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: ShawninNY On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 11:09 am

Not good for food garden very high in heavy metals
ShawninNY
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Waterford/penn royal in garage
Stove/Furnace Model: 1994 Erin

Re: are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: gerry_g On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 11:19 am

As already mentioned, they have heavy metals and other impurities.

They also are acidic, the opposite of lime or wood ash. Also your going to get chunks.
gerry_g
 
Coal Size/Type: rice
Other Heating: Electric, Propane
Stove/Furnace Make: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Pioneer LE Top Vent


Re: are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: Pacowy On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 11:28 am

ShawninNY wrote:Not good for food garden very high in heavy metals


It would be good if you could cite a source for that. All of the authoritative information I have seen indicates that the concentrations of harmful materials in anthracite coal (and ash) are comparable to the concentrations commonly found in soil. If there is a real hazard it should be made known; if it's anti-coal PR, it should not be taken as fact without verification.

Mike
Pacowy
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: H.B. Smith 350 Mills boiler/EFM 85R stoker
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/anthracite

Re: are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: freetown fred On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 11:30 am

I see the gloom & doomers are at it again :( They are fine & people have been using them on gardens & lawns for many years--ASH-- if you guys are real concerned with acidity & negative components, ya better STOP eating a whole bunch of food you buy in the grocery store or farmers market--OK, OK, so what if my youngest girl has 3 eyes & 7 toes on her middle leg! :clap: toothy
freetown fred
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: HITZER 50-93
Coal Size/Type: BLASCHAK Nut/Stove mix

Re: are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: windyhill4.2 On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 11:39 am

Click on the ash thread ,even the EPA gives approval.
windyhill4.2
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1960 EFM520 installed in truck box
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Crane 404 with variable blower
Coal Size/Type: 404-nut, 520 rice ,anthracite for both

Re: are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: Sunny Boy On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 11:42 am

freetown fred wrote:I see the gloom & doomers are at it again :( They are fine & people have been using them on gardens & lawns for many years--ASH-- if you guys are real concerned with acidity & negative components, ya better STOP eating a whole bunch of food you buy in the grocery store or farmers market--OK, OK, so what if my youngest girl has 3 eyes & 7 toes on her middle leg! :clap: toothy


Better vision and better traction walking up that hill of yours, . . . what's not to like about her ? :D

Paul
Sunny Boy
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Anthracite Industrial, domestic hot water heater
Baseburners & Antiques: Glenwood range 208, # 6 base heater, 2 Modern Oak 118.
Coal Size/Type: Nuts !
Other Heating: Oil &electric plenum furnace

Re: are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: freetown fred On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 11:46 am

Yep, she's my lil princess---I did have to buy her a side saddle! :eek2: Here's a pix from around 10 yrs ago :)
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freetown fred
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: HITZER 50-93
Coal Size/Type: BLASCHAK Nut/Stove mix

Re: are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: Sunny Boy On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 11:52 am

Everywhere I dig on this property, I find buried coal ash, clinkers, and unburned pieces of hard coal.

Two of the previous owners were the local coal dealers. The house had a big "octopus" coal furnace, a coal kitchen range, and a coal hot water heater (still here), with a large coal bin in the basement. They had vegetable and extensive flower gardens and had a very large chicken house. There were two horse stalls in the back of the carriage house.

They and their family members all lived to a ripe old age - most well into their 90's.

Paul
Last edited by Sunny Boy on Thu Jan 30, 2014 11:58 am, edited 1 time in total.
Sunny Boy
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Anthracite Industrial, domestic hot water heater
Baseburners & Antiques: Glenwood range 208, # 6 base heater, 2 Modern Oak 118.
Coal Size/Type: Nuts !
Other Heating: Oil &electric plenum furnace

Re: are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: Sunny Boy On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 11:57 am

Fred,

Good job Dad !!!!! ;)

But buying her a side saddle ? You trying to get your property taxes raised, or something ? :shock:

Next thing we know, you'll be drinking tea with your pinky in the air, and hiring someone to load the stove for ya. :D

Paul
Sunny Boy
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Anthracite Industrial, domestic hot water heater
Baseburners & Antiques: Glenwood range 208, # 6 base heater, 2 Modern Oak 118.
Coal Size/Type: Nuts !
Other Heating: Oil &electric plenum furnace

Re: are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: gerry_g On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 1:18 pm

freetown fred wrote:I see the gloom & doomers are at it again


So are the "I know the answer, no need to think" folks.

The original post mentioned using it as one would use lime. If one needs lime, they just will need to buy even more to counteract the acidity of coal ash.

I use rice coal clunkers instead of sand on my driveways. But fly ash does irritate MY lungs, so I use a dust mask with the normal curly breezes here. That by no way means it does the same to everybody.

As far as minerals, coal ash generally DOES help plants grow, but only if it doesn't make the the soil more acid than the plants like. Higher yield is unrelated to higher quality or possible contaminants.

Regarding heavy metals, which coal from which mine, how much is used? Anecdotes such as "my family lived a long time" mean nothing. It probably was genetic with the help of a couple drinks a day. Maybe local produce rather than imports with who know what chemicals used growing them.

Generalizing coal ash as good or bad in a garden just doesn't work.
gerry_g
 
Coal Size/Type: rice
Other Heating: Electric, Propane
Stove/Furnace Make: Leisure Line
Stove/Furnace Model: Pioneer LE Top Vent

Re: are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: windyhill4.2 On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 1:42 pm

fish guide wrote:Are coal ashes ok to spread like fertilizer or lime on a lawn or vegetable garden? Is there anything chemically beneficial or harmful about them?

Yes,they are ok to spread like fertilizer or lime on a lawn or vegetable garden,too much at a time will raise the acidity but so does sawdust,lime will correct that ! Moderation is the key to most everything in life. gerry..g Stinkarette smoke bothers my lungs after irritating my throat ,yet lots of idiots still stick them things in their mouth & suck on them & inhale that smoke.Lime will irritate your lungs too,so will Clorox & other cleaners ,even the chlorine used in pools, "I know the answer,no need to think" ,LOOK in the mirror. Smart man you are for wearing a dust mask to apply ash & lime to your garden on a windy day.
windyhill4.2
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1960 EFM520 installed in truck box
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Crane 404 with variable blower
Coal Size/Type: 404-nut, 520 rice ,anthracite for both

Re: are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: Pacowy On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 1:55 pm

gerry_g wrote: Regarding heavy metals, which coal from which mine, how much is used? Anecdotes such as "my family lived a long time" mean nothing. It probably was genetic with the help of a couple drinks a day. Maybe local produce rather than imports with who know what chemicals used growing them.

Generalizing coal ash as good or bad in a garden just doesn't work.


Again, the authoritative info I have seen indicates that the variation in content of potentially harmful materials in coal ash basically follows the variation observed in "uncontaminated" soil samples. I guess it's progress that in 2 hours you went from generalizing about heavy metals in ash to speculating that maybe using a lot of coal from the wrong mine would be a problem. I still don't see anything that resembles support for that proposition by a study with actual information.

I'm not sure whether it still is offered, but back in the day UMass would analyze soil samples submitted by the public (for a very small fee, I think). At a house where I never burned coal, and no coal or ash residues were visible, I recall being unpleasantly surprised by the concentration of lead in the soil. The sample was far from the house, so paint was not a prime suspect. It turned out the most likely cause was lead from the days of leaded gasoline.

Maybe somebody who regularly uses coal ash on their lawn or garden would consider testing some soil samples (with and without coal ash applied could be particularly interesting). When the results come back, I'm guessing someone will breathe a sigh of relief that there really isn't a lot of, say, arsenic in coal ash. Then they will go back to handling PT lumber with bare hands, and cutting it without using a respirator.

Mike
Pacowy
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: H.B. Smith 350 Mills boiler/EFM 85R stoker
Coal Size/Type: Buckwheat/anthracite

Re: are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: Sunny Boy On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 2:01 pm

Some plants, bushes, and trees prefer a more acid soil.

I've been putting the ashes out on my gravel driveway for seven years now. The grass grows just as well, and as fast in the ash-heavy soil along the edges of the driveway as it does throughout the rest of the place. The bushes and Rose of Sharon that line parts of the driveway are doing great too.

True, two families are just a small sampling. However, If you walk through the old cemeteries around here and look at the head stones of those who lived through the height of the coal burning years, check the dates and you'll see patterns for what ages the highest deaths occurred. There's' a small group that died in infancy, then slightly higher number of women who died in their child bearing years. But, the vast majority died in their 80's and 90's.

And this was also a time when no one sent anything off the property. They used the coal ashes on sidewalks, driveways and spread around the yard in winter, or thrown in a pit when the garbage was burned. They composed everything they could. And they grew a lot of their vegetables and herbs in their own gardens.

Paul
Sunny Boy
 
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: Anthracite Industrial, domestic hot water heater
Baseburners & Antiques: Glenwood range 208, # 6 base heater, 2 Modern Oak 118.
Coal Size/Type: Nuts !
Other Heating: Oil &electric plenum furnace

Re: are coal ashes ok to spread on lawn or in vegetable garden?

PostBy: windyhill4.2 On: Thu Jan 30, 2014 2:08 pm

Pacowy & Sunny Boy , Well stated,thanks !!!!!!
windyhill4.2
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1960 EFM520 installed in truck box
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Crane 404 with variable blower
Coal Size/Type: 404-nut, 520 rice ,anthracite for both