Effect on Plants and Landscaping

Under typical application conditions, calcium chloride will not damage grass or vegetation adjacent to the surface being deiced. As with fertilizer and any other deicer, it is possible for grass to be damaged if the chloride-based deicer is over-applied or large quantities are directly applied to the grass or vegetation.

A 1996 study, “The Effects of Deicing Chemicals on Turfgrass”1, by the Horticulture Department of Iowa State University, compared the effects of urea/calcium chloride blends, potassium chloride, urea, rock salt, magnesium chloride hexahydrate, and calcium chloride pellets on Kentucky bluegrass. After a winter season of deicer application, the study showed that calcium chloride pellets were generally less damaging to existing turf than almost all the other deicers, and yielded better re-seeding germination rates the following fall. Only a blend of urea and calcium chloride fared better – and urea alone did worse. See: A Review of Deicers and their Effect on Vegetation.

MgCl2 and Vegetation — Don't be Misled

Deicer Blends and the Environment — Don't be Misled

1The Effects of Deicing Chemicals on Turfgrass, D. Minner and B. Bingaman, Iowa State University, 1996