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I have just burnt some old fence panels and branches

?Is it good to add to a veg patch

? If yes....why

? If no......why not

Thank you


Had the fence panels been treated?


Wood ash contains potash which is an essential ingredient in fertilisers for plants.  however, yours may now be contaminated by whatever chemical was used to preserve your fence panels so I would not use it on any vegetables or fruits and I would check for info on teh vital component before putting it on flower beds.


The panels  came from B & Q and I painted them with B&Q wood stain about 7 years ago

The branches were from my garden

Sounds like I should keep it off the soil



I've had a look and the panels will most likely have been made from tanalised wood which contains arsenic so be very careful of the dust and ashes.  Wear a mask to be safe.



Thanks...the ash is wet and I have just swept it into a bucket for disposal

Didnt realise that gareden fences were so lethal Obelixx


Like many things, they are fine when used properly for their intended purpose.  Disposal is another matter it seems.

Roger  Brook

Of course you can use it after it has burnt, what is the world coming to when people imagine a burnt fence will be toxic! Mind you the ashes will be next to useless as timber has very little nutrient content as compared to for example burning smaller branches and twigs.

I burn quite a few fires and extinguish them with water not letting the the fire 'burn through'. That way I get lovely black charcoal which will improve the physical structure of the soil- as well as retaining the potash and lime that wood ash contains. Google biochar to find out more

My two pennies worth.  

I would not use ash from any treated timber ESP in veg or fruit patch. Not  too happy with treated fences anyway near edible crops.

As a layman, my instincts tell me poisons and chemicals in the wood would be released into the atmosphere at the burning stage.  Possibly such elements would be deposited onto the soil. I remember burning old wicker rocking chair once and the fumes were bad.  

My veg amd fruit patch is as healthy and free from toxins as possible so, as I'm doubtful, I don't do it.



A good and worthwhile discussion Friends

thank you all

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