Black Magic

There has been much interest, and amusement, recently amongst UK bloggers about a recent question on Gardeners Question Time.  The question revolved around using soot in the garden and has prompted some, especially VP, to ask what it can be used for.  I have done some rooting around in books and have come up with the following.  These are all in a book called Garden Magic by Ann Taylor.  The front cover describes the book as “Our green-fingered expert, shares her astonishing garden tips, tricks and tonics using common household items”

Uses for soot

  • use as a repellent for birds on a newly sown lawn – but you need to replace when it rains
  • use as a foodstuff on grassy and lawn areas.
  • deters insects, especially the onion gnat and turnip fly.  Sprinkle liberally around onion adn turnip plants. 
  • rid attacking grubs normally attracted to cabbage, broccoli and cauliflower roots.  Prepare a misture of slaked lime, soot and earth in 1:1:3 parts and place a handful of mixture in hole prepared for the plant.
  • use as a manure on flower beds.
  • sooty water is an excellent tonic for the entier garden
  • cen be scattered over the foilage to deter weevils on broad bean seedlings

If we follow all this advice our gardens, particularly our veggy plots, will look like coal mines.

Of now to see what other household items I can use in my garden

8 Comments on “Black Magic

  1. Helen – thanks so much for doing a post especially for me 😀 You have unearthed a mine of information!

  2. You are welcome VP – I am looking through this book to see what other gems I can find but to be honest I havent heard of some of the everyday objects!!

    Amazing isnt it Nancy!

  3. This is great. I’m wondering, though, what exactly is soot? Is it the stuff that accumulates on the inside of a chimney? How is it different (in composition and effects) from ashes? What’s IN it? Okay, time to go hit the Google search box.

  4. They use soot on the worst worn patches on the lawns at Mottisfont so I suspect it is an effective way to boost growth

  5. I’m sure I remember my Dad using it as a repellent for slugs and snails …but after nearly thirty years my memory could be playing tricks.

  6. Hi,
    I’ve heard that the Heavy Metals that are a residue from coal and coke can be TOXIC around vegetables .

    I’d advise extreme caution in these area.

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