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So, What Happened Here ????

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by White Gardens, Oct 29, 2008.

  1. TXNSLighting

    TXNSLighting LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 6,462

    :laugh::laugh::laugh::laugh: Thats funny right there...You sure it wasnt chemicals?? Cuz it sure looks like it...
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2008
  2. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,783

    You guys are all over it, but not on it.

    This happened last summer, about July I do think. So no natural dieback.

    I'll get you guys a little closer to answer.

    2nd guess-

    What killed the plants, flowers, and grass was a massive disease infestation. I'm guessing it was root-rot because the roots smelled like rotting garbage. If you look at some of the pics you can see the stems of some of the Hostas laying on the ground and they pulled out with ease. Many shrubs on the property also had sooty mold/ fungus on them from this infestation, no plant on the property was unharmed in some way.

    Now, question is, how did it get there in such a short period of time. There is one picture that I posted that is the red flag, and it took me a couple of days of staring at the pics to figure it out. (It took me a few days to figure it out myself)

    Not trying to mess with you guys, and I'm not getting a rise out of stumping everyone. This thread will be a good FYI in the end.
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2008
  3. karlgrooms

    karlgrooms LawnSite Member
    Posts: 140

    Bad mulch?? Just a guess. Not all the pictures have mulch in the beds though. Hmmm..... I'll keep looking until a answer is found or you bail us out.
     
  4. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,783

    Bingo!!!

    If you look in Pic 1 you see the exact square of a bag of mulch that laid there for 24 hours. I was able to trace how the homeowner stacked the mulch from the back of the truck, and how she spread it from bed to bed handfuls at a time.

    The pallet had to of been massively infected with the disease inside and outside of the bags. Where did they come from?? Wal-Mart. I did a write-up sent picks, and the homeowner was able to re-coupe her loses, and I got a $500 dollar bonus out of it. If it hadn't of been for the dead square patch I might have not pin-pointed the issue.

    All mulch was removed, burned, and I brought in good hardwood mulch.

    Moral of the story, never used bagged mulch, ever.

    Thanks for playing along everyone. I thought it was a good example of how bad the stuff really is.

    Copy the pics if you need to, so you can show some of your customers in case they want you to use bagged mulch.
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2008
  5. karlgrooms

    karlgrooms LawnSite Member
    Posts: 140

    Ha!! I was spot on for once..Lucky stab. You made it tough by not including mulch in all pics.

    I've often heard mulch horror stories.... but usually has to do with mulch being too green not diseased though.
    You have to be on your toes when it comes to mulch. I have used bag mulch( by customers request) but very selective about what i pick out.

    Also have put out mulch that a customer had delivered. The pile had been there quite some time and looked really rough and tired. I expressed concern about it and was given the OK. Is there is a way to tell if mulch is bad?...IE, smell, looks,mold spores etc.

    They say that mulch should be turned ever so often, and that would be hard to do if it is bagged up ready for sale.
     
  6. PHS

    PHS LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 724

    If it was a pathogen in the mulch what was it? The pattern of damage looks more like a chemical caused it. The mulch was probably contaminated with something
     
  7. Tyler7692

    Tyler7692 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,086

    ...with gasoline.
     
  8. Kickin Your Grass

    Kickin Your Grass LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 479

    We use bagged mulch all the time and never have had any problems. This is the first time I have ever heard using bagged mulch is bad.
     
  9. PerfectEarth

    PerfectEarth LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,735

    Great thread. Thanks for the pics/story.
     
  10. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,783

    The one reason that I feel that it wasn't chemical damage was only because it didn't exhibit the signs of chemical damage. Sure, it was a large area, such as spray damage, but the foliage didn't look like chemical damage, such as the browning out was a lighter color, and the whole plant didn't wilt. Not saying that it couldn't of been chemicals, but I feel strongly that it wasn't.

    I wish you guys could have been there in person, the smell of rotting roots was worse than my full garbage cans sitting in the sun with a pile of diapers in them.
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2008

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