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Re: Rubber Mulch

Message from RonDEZone7a

NOT wishing to start a "mulch war" but people should be aware that Rubber Mulch has some issues. You might want to research this, if you haven't already, before you apply it. I just completed a Master Gardener program and they definitely did not recommend it.

From: http://www.finegardening.com/its-red-its-rubber-it-safe-your-garden

Hazards of rubber mulch:

Itís flammable
A research study comparing several different mulches found that when rubber mulch, which contains petroleum products, is ignited, it is more difficult to extinguish than any other mulch--including wood chips.

It's Toxic
Like any other material, tires and rubber mulches are eventually broken down by environmental factors, such as sunlight, or by bacteria and fungi. The chemicals that leach from tires are anything but benign. They include heavy metals, such as aluminum, cadmium, chromium, molybdenum, selenium, and zinc. Two other common rubber leachates are 2-Mercaptobenzothiazole (MBT) and poly≠aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs); these chemicals are health hazards for humans and the environment.

It's Destructive
Many vegetables and ornamentals mulched with rubber can accumulate high levels of zinc, sometimes to the point of death. Other metals found in decomposing rubber can also accumulate in plant roots, leaves, or fruit, depending on the species. Acidic soils are particularly sensitive because heavy metals are more available for plant uptake. Decomposing rubber mulches provide a constant stream of toxic leachates into adjacent aquatic systems. Research has also shown that entire aquatic communities are injured or killed when exposed to these chemicals.


Read more: http://www.finegardening.com/its-red-its-rubber-it-safe-your-garden#ixzz3so70QreK
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