Salt and Your Garden in Winter

road salt

With the recent snowfall, there’s plenty of folks spreading salt onto their walkways and driveways to ensure the ice doesn’t cause them to slip. But, if your garden is near any of these areas that are getting splashed with salt, be very careful. Salt can end up harming your plants and vegetation later on.

Salt Toxicity

There are still areas that spray salt out and if you are using salt around your own property, here’s what can happen to your vegetation. Salt damages plants in two ways: spray salt can turn your evergreens or any deciduous plants above ground brown. The buds could die or the plant might not leaf out next year. The other way salt can affect your garden is by absorption into your soil. Any plant affected by higher salt levels in the soil could end up with stunted growth, pests, and disease or might not every spring forth from the ground again. Plants absorb the salt and need to expel it through the branches and leaves. The toxicity ends up killing the leaves.

What to Use Rather than Salt

Around here, we know keeping salt out of the lakes is a huge goal. You can simply try to use less salt or use other products like sand, a sand/salt mix, finely graded gravel, cat litter or even coffee grounds.   Any of these products will help a little with traction and reduce the amount of salt going into our lakes.

Best option, avoid salt anywhere near your landscaping.