Selecting De-icers for the Garden

What is the best way to deal with ice on steps and paths in the garden? I have been told not to use salt based products is this true?

Although not always the ideal solution, I prefer to use sand on icy steps and paths. This way I don’t have to worry about any negative impact on my garden.

If the situation calls for a chemical de-icer it is best to use one that is either potassium or calcium based. Here’s why: salt absorbed by plants, either through the roots or leaves, draws moisture from plant cells, causing their tissues to dry out. When you use a salt based de-icer, salt can soak into the ground with the melting snow or can become airborne and cling to leaves and evergreen needles.

Always use any type of de-icer sparingly and remove ice and snow with a shovel first.