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An alternative to crop rotation Empty An alternative to crop rotation

Post  tomperrin on 3/11/2012, 6:47 pm

Soil Solarization for Gardens & Landscapes Management
http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn74145.html

I think that this might be a pretty good alternative to crop rotation, esp when I am limited in space.
And is probably a good
idea otherwise, say at the end of season for corn. Just till a bit
with a hand cultivator after removing stalks, cover with painter's
plastic drop cloth and we're ready for next year.

Tom
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Post  plantoid on 3/11/2012, 7:23 pm

I like it Tom ,

Sadly I don't think we cant do that sort of thing over here for the vast majority of the year we don't get enough sun for long enough to make the heat , though to some guys say they have done it .

A while back I had 1.5 mm black engineering plastic sheet on most of the back garden for two years whilst renovations were under way.. removed it and in three weeks it was a jungle of perennial weeds .

I also did the same in an allotment many moons ago but used clear sheet, the weeds grew ...turned yellow and new ones grew in the shade of the yellow ones. Slugs and snails reproduced even better.
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Post  shannon1 on 3/12/2012, 12:53 am

Interesting info I had no idea "benefical soil organisms are able to either survive solarization or recolonize the soil very quickly afterwards"
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Post  Chopper on 3/12/2012, 12:59 am

Why are we tilling?
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An alternative to crop rotation Empty Why are we tilling?

Post  tomperrin on 3/12/2012, 8:52 am

@Chopper wrote:Why are we tilling?

When I rake out the winter's leaves, last year's roots, etc, that's the SFG equivalent of "tilling".
What's left, as you know, is the easiest to work soil ever in the history of agriculture.

Tom
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Post  shannon1 on 3/13/2012, 2:27 am

@tomperrin wrote:
@Chopper wrote:Why are we tilling?

When I rake out the winter's leaves, last year's roots, etc, that's the SFG equivalent of "tilling".
What's left, as you know, is the easiest to work soil ever in the history of agriculture.

Tom
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Post  martha on 3/13/2012, 3:13 pm

I am curious about soil solarization for my beds that have soil borne diseases (imported wrong dirt a few years ago.) I need to find out for sure how long it has to be heated to actually kill the diseases - some places I have read an entire season!
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Post  tomperrin on 3/13/2012, 5:58 pm

I would wrap the beds in clear plastic now. It doesn't take long for the heat to build up on a sunny day, even in the spring. I would think that by the end of June you should be able to plant (based on the article). I would also turn over the soil every month just to extend the benefits of solarization a bit deeper. My guess is that the benefit comes not only from heat, but from sunlight.

You could put a cheap thermometer under the plastic so you could see what the temp gets to.

Tom
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Post  martha on 3/13/2012, 7:56 pm

Thermometer - good idea - especially if I use my min/max one.
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