Someone asked a question on what woods not to use, so I'm wondering why you shouldn't use these wood types when building a hugelkultur (raised bed used to either conserve water, or increase surface area on top of rotting wood):

  • cedar
  • camphor wood
  • black locust
  • black cherry
  • black walnut
  • pine
  • fir
  • 3
    Black walnut can prevent other plants from growing, I've heard. Cedar and camphor may not be attractive to insects (which may be beneficial for this). I don't know about Black Cherry, but I've perhaps heard that cherry can take a while to decompose. Those might be some things to research and see if they're an issue. Commented Jul 27, 2016 at 8:37
  • 1
    Cedar, Camphor, Black Locust, Black Walnut, and certain varieties of Fir are all very slow or resistant to decomposition. This would reduce their usefulness in a hugelkultur. Not sure about the others.
    – ench
    Commented Jul 27, 2016 at 20:00
  • I'm looking for the wiki style answer. Commented Jul 27, 2016 at 22:53

1 Answer 1


The types of wood that you have mentioned contain tannins that negatively affect the germination and the growth of the plants, nitrogen availability and photosynthesis. They are also toxic for some microorganisms.

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