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Biodegradable plastic for mulching: cost, tips for using it at its best. Where to buy it. Advantages and disadvantages of bio plastic sheeting for mulching.
There is always moreplasticin our landfills and the bad news is that it will be stored there for a long time. Unlike materials like paper, glass and cans, theplasticit is difficult todispose ofbecause it can't bebiodegradedneither'composed: it is a completely synthetic material! Thereplasticit is destroying ecosystems, settling on the seabed, polluting the soil and creating real floating islands in the oceans. On the contrary, thebiodegradable plasticit doesn't take long fordecompose, it does not release toxic material into the soil and, in many cases, requires less energy to be produced.
Mulching with organic or non-organic plastic?
The form ofbiodegradable plasticmost common for themulchis made up ofcorn starch clothand lasts approximately one crop cycle, after which it can be buried in the ground.
The duration of a plastic sheet standard for mulch the soil depends on its quality and thickness. A cloth of plastic for mulching in polypropylene can last from 5 to 8 years, while a sheet of plastic for mulching in polyethylene with a thickness of 50 mm lasts a maximum of two years (if well maintained).
The duration of a sheet of biodegradable plastic for mulching
As stated, the biodegradable plastic for mulchinglasts approximately as long as a crop cycle. In particular, i bioplastic mulch sheets obtained from corn starch, they have a short duration as they begin to tear after 3-4 months. The big advantage of the biodegradable plastic sheets for mulchingis that, being organic matter, at the end of the harvest they can be buried with a simple motor hoe and the risk of soil pollution is eliminated.
At the time of purchase, read the approximate duration of the cloth on the package. Sometimes, thebiodegradable plastic for mulchingit can last only 45 - 90 days for short crop cycles.
Biodegradable plastic for mulching, advantages and disadvantages
Sixbioplastic sheets for mulchingthey have some more advantages than those made of conventional plastic, they retain the same disadvantages. Below I will list all the advantages and disadvantages of usingbioplastic sheets for mulching, the classic advantages of mulching must be added to the following list, regardless of the mulching material used.
- They extend and puncture with the same machines used for traditional sheets.
- They eliminate the production of plastic waste to be disposed of in landfills. At the end of the cultivation, thebiodegradable plasticused for themulchit can be incorporated into the soil and will turn into organic matter, water and carbon dioxide.
- It saves time after cultivation: there will be no need for recovery.
- Therebiodegradationof bioplastic sheets does not cause soil pollution. On the contrary, traditional plastic must be carefully removed and disposed of from the field, any residue would cause pollution of the field.
- Other environmental benefits
They reduce the consumption of non-renewable energy resources, also industry experts have estimated that using biodegradable plastic to mulch, an environmental saving of over 500 kg of CO2 equivalent per hectare will be obtained considering a land cover withmulchof 6000 sqm / ha.
- Like standard plastic sheets, the bioplastic mulchperforms a thermal action. The plastic sheets orbioplastic warm the ground! This is great in winter but less ideal in summer.
- From an agricultural point of view, any plastic sheet (biodegradable or standard) has the disadvantage that it does not allow infiltration of rainwater or optimal rain irrigation, therefore its use is recommended in conjunction with drip irrigation .
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