Grass Clippings and Golf Course Sand

by Joe A

Hi. I recently got some grass clippings for my compost, but noticed that it has a bit of sand.....likely from the nearby golf bunker. Should I still mix these grass clippings into my compost? Thanks Joe A.

Be Very Careful!

Hi Joe

So the sand would not be a problem. However I assume that these grass clippings come from a golf course. That is a red flag.

Golf courses often use persistent herbicides to maintain their greens and fairways.

Here's why. These herbicides affect all the broadleaf weeds and leave the grasses to live another day. The bonus from the course perspective is that they remain active for several seasons. It means the course might only need to spray once every two years or so to keep weeds in check.

My herbicide page goes into some detail about just how big a problem this can be for people wanting compost for a veggie or flower garden. Go to the course where you got the clippings and ask them what herbicides they use. Most do break down in compost but the persistent herbicides don't and could affect your veggie garden for several years.

Here's a link to the US Composting Council's list of all the trade names of these herbicides

If the course is using these herbicides return the grass clippings to them.

Best of Luck Joe

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