Beekeeping Forums banner
1 - 20 of 37 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
67 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is very basic and I don't want to tell people how to suck eggs but sharing is caring.. just preparing my tomato bed for upcoming summer.

Our spring is too chilly to plant warm season veg, and so is sprummer, so although sprinter happens sept here we don't put in tomatoes till december so I take advantage of these 3 months to prepare soil for tomatoes. After I've dug in chook poo or green manure or whatevers, I grow biomustard or stinky marigolds in the tomato patch, planted in Sept. Both of these plants discourage nematodes. tomatoes are grown from seed into pots till a foot+ high before they are put in. If its biomustard I slash it down just before planting toms, and let rot on top, and the tomatoes grow so quickly biomustard just rots down underneath. Marigolds I just leave there and plant around them, when the tomato grows up and shades them out, they too die and rot right down where you need them, also adding more slow release nitrogen and potassium to soil.

what are your vegie hacks?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
902 Posts
where are you from? its the ending of summer here and september should start to cool down and the cool weather crops start producing...I get truck loads of cow sht from a friend that raises beef cattle, I let it sit for a year or so and turn it a few times with a backhoe..and walla..black gold....and that gets rototilled into the garden, along with any wood ash from the wood stove and fireplace through the winter, I save it in 55 gallon drums...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
67 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
where are you from? its the ending of summer here and september should start to cool down and the cool weather crops start producing...I get truck loads of cow sht from a friend that raises beef cattle, I let it sit for a year or so and turn it a few times with a backhoe..and walla..black gold....and that gets rototilled into the garden, along with any wood ash from the wood stove and fireplace through the winter, I save it in 55 gallon drums...
super. everyone likes a good manure pile. back in the day, or the year as it may have been, a farms value was based on it's manure pile. City people don't realise what an asset it is. We used to have generously pooing horses on the property adjoining ours but it's now sold and humans will move in and build. Horses best neighbors ever. It's good you let it sit, apart from the settling out of chemicals and the fresh poo can' burn' plants, but also because alkalis like lime or woodash can volatise nitrogen, so normally the two are never applied together. But letting it sit a year it should be ok. Normally you put poo in, then let biology do it's thing for two weeks, then add the lime. If I'm waiting on say a spring veg crop to finish so I can put in tomatoes, I want to dig some chook poo in first but because of time limits, I won't have the leisure of the two week nitrogen incorporation. So I cheat- I get my aged chook poo and mix it up with about 1/4 vol of soil, and let that sit for two weeks while spring crop is finishing, then the lime and chook poo and all else goes in at same time when the bed is free.

I also use the woodash in a tub for the chickens dust bath. It's so wet here, in our clay soils, that for a substantial amount of the year they don't have a dry place to dustbath. So they've got a little undercover shelter with feeder and big tub of wood ash for dustbath. Used to put dried clay soil with but it's more effort than it's worth and chooks seem happy with 100% ash.

Yes, I'm in southern Australia. It's a feral wet cold spring here. Just putting in my quick spring crops before the main events in December
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
902 Posts
what I have found or see with todays society..most people dont want to get their hands dirty and the thought of using animal poo as you say..lol...is out of the question and just pour chemical fertilizer onto the plants, but the organic material from poo is just as important as the fertilizer part..the more organic material put in the soil the better..I bought an old manure spreader last month and im rebuilding it, I will spread leaves and any other organic material I can find to run through it..along with a ever growing in size veggie garden, I plant many food plots for deer and other wildlife to bring them onto the property, I have several ponds stocked with fish and the ducks love to visit..I also plant lots of wildlife friendly trees that produce fruits, berries and nuts....
next project is to build another garden area infront of my greenhouse thats connected to a barn, the greenhouse is 20 ft x 80ft..its not in full use as im not at this location all the time yet...I have to put up 6ft fencing to keep the deer out or i wont see one veggie come to me..lol...im planning to start that next year..
my ground is mostly a few inches of soil with hardpan below, so I plow as deep as I can to get the clay broken up and organic material mixed in...I had 2 big corn fields but the soil lost most of its nitrogen, so now they are planted with clover that puts nitrogen back in and its a clover the deer like to eat, so the fields still bring in wildlife..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
150 Posts
We bed our horses with pine wood chips so that is what is mixed in with their manure. Never had much luck with it in the garden. It seemed to grow to many weeds instead. I have a good pile built up that has been sitting for a few years.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Gypsi

·
Registered
Joined
·
902 Posts
We bed our horses with pine wood chips so that is what is mixed in with their manure. Never had much luck with it in the garden. It seemed to grow to many weeds instead. I have a good pile built up that has been sitting for a few years.
if you let the horse manure sit for a year, as it composts and heats up, many of the weed seeds are killed off..and pine chips are acidic, also any fesh chips that arent rotted, give off poisob gas as they decom[ose and if in and around the roots of plants or trees will kill them off....so nothing fresh should be put in the soil if your going to plant that season..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
150 Posts
if you let the horse manure sit for a year, as it composts and heats up, many of the weed seeds are killed off..and pine chips are acidic, also any fesh chips that arent rotted, give off poisob gas as they decom[ose and if in and around the roots of plants or trees will kill them off....so nothing fresh should be put in the soil if your going to plant that season..
Good,then even if it has the pine chips,it will be ok after a year or so? I know right were I can scoop it up with my front end loader. I've been using it for my back stop when sighting in my rifle. How's that for killing two bird with one stone?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Gypsi

·
Registered
Joined
·
902 Posts
Good,then even if it has the pine chips,it will be ok after a year or so? I know right were I can scoop it up with my front end loader. I've been using it for my back stop when sighting in my rifle. How's that for killing two bird with one stone?
LOL..dual pupose pile..yes the pine chips will rot and be good anywhere, but if you have acid loving plants like blue berries , pumpkin,black berries..or any other acid loving plant you can put on the surface only, pine chips...I do that with my blue berries and even though the chips are fresh, they are above ground and the gases dont go down into the roots...I had an old dead cub tree that I cut down and had the stump ground out, I planted a new tree and figured ill mix in a bunch of wood chips in the soil to add organic material, in a few months the tree was dead, so I brought it back to the nursery and they replaced it, in a few months that one was dead, so I dug up a trash maple tree and planted it there to see what would happen, it died in a few months, so no I thought maybe there was a natural gas leak in the ground killing my trees, ..I was at another nursery and was talking to a guy that knew his stuff and told him what was happening and the first thing he asked if I mixed the fresh ground wood chips in the soil, and thats when he gave me the bad news about the poison gas they give off and will kill anything I planted....so I went home dug the dead tree out and ALL the soil with the wood chips in it, planted another new tree with only soil I got from my back yard and its been over 10 years and the tree is growing great...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
150 Posts
LOL..dual pupose pile..yes the pine chips will rot and be good anywhere, but if you have acid loving plants like blue berries , pumpkin,black berries..or any other acid loving plant you can put on the surface only, pine chips...I do that with my blue berries and even though the chips are fresh, they are above ground and the gases dont go down into the roots...I had an old dead cub tree that I cut down and had the stump ground out, I planted a new tree and figured ill mix in a bunch of wood chips in the soil to add organic material, in a few months the tree was dead, so I brought it back to the nursery and they replaced it, in a few months that one was dead, so I dug up a trash maple tree and planted it there to see what would happen, it died in a few months, so no I thought maybe there was a natural gas leak in the ground killing my trees, ..I was at another nursery and was talking to a guy that knew his stuff and told him what was happening and the first thing he asked if I mixed the fresh ground wood chips in the soil, and thats when he gave me the bad news about the poison gas they give off and will kill anything I planted....so I went home dug the dead tree out and ALL the soil with the wood chips in it, planted another new tree with only soil I got from my back yard and its been over 10 years and the tree is growing great...
That's a pretty good story. Through you, I learned something too. Thank you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
67 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
That's a pretty good story. Through you, I learned something too. Thank you.
I bury wood in the ground, but hardwood, not coniferous or anything like that. I also throw in some saprophytically colonised wood chip, leaf mould or an cellulose matter to get the ball rolling. It has made beautiful soil . make sure it can breathe. Look a writing by Sepp Holzer- he loves burying wood.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
150 Posts
I've gotten ambitious the past couple of days and built a couple raised gardens and ordered dirt from a garden center consisting of Garden Spring top soil and mushroom compost ,all in a 50/50 mix. In the deep box, I put old hardwood logs and branches in the bottom to take up space and added the soil on top. I even had a chance to plant a rose bush and a Lilac bush around the house before I came up for air. The pollinators should love those.

Plant Natural landscape Tree Cemetery Wood
 
  • Like
Reactions: Gypsi

·
Registered
Joined
·
902 Posts
one of the problems with raised beds is they need constant watering...if you dug down 2ft into the ground and did the same thing you would water less and the soil would hold moisture longer, and at the end of the season, the ground would stay warmer for the cool weather crops to keep growing longer..if you live in a warmer climate then thats a moot point, but now you have to water all the time, I havent watered my garden up state other than when I first planted seed or plants, its been rain and dew only...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
150 Posts
one of the problems with raised beds is they need constant watering...if you dug down 2ft into the ground and did the same thing you would water less and the soil would hold moisture longer, and at the end of the season, the ground would stay warmer for the cool weather crops to keep growing longer..if you live in a warmer climate then thats a moot point, but now you have to water all the time, I havent watered my garden up state other than when I first planted seed or plants, its been rain and dew only...
That makes a lot of sense now that you mentioned it. Good thing my raised garden is close to the water valve.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,723 Posts
My garden gets flooded when water comes down a wide hill, so part of it is raised bed, and in drought I do have to water daily, but when the puddles form 6 inches deep my tomatoes are above the water level. Lots of good stuff in this thread. I've been off fixing ponds.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
150 Posts
Wife decided she wanted another raised garden, same size as the deep 29 inch one but this time I will put clay dirt in the bottom to take up the space and add good garden top soil and mushroom compost on top to a layer about 16 inches. Bending over is hard on us these days, don't know why.:rolleyes:
My pond is down about 2-1/2 foot. We need lots of rain here too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
902 Posts
Wife decided she wanted another raised garden, same size as the deep 29 inch one but this time I will put clay dirt in the bottom to take up the space and add good garden top soil and mushroom compost on top to a layer about 16 inches. Bending over is hard on us these days, don't know why.:rolleyes:
My pond is down about 2-1/2 foot. We need lots of rain here too.
fill the bottom with organic material, logs, leaves , sticks, NOT clay....as the organic stuff rots the level will drop alittle and just fill in with more soil or organic material like shredded leaves and they will rot through the winter...ontop, and if you can get any cow or horse manure , fill in the top with that and turn into the soil..the last thing you want is to put clay where it is not...the organic material will hold moisture, clay will not..so if the box hold moisture you wont have to water as much, roots will go down to the moisture, roots hate clay...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
150 Posts
fill the bottom with organic material, logs, leaves , sticks, NOT clay....as the organic stuff rots the level will drop alittle and just fill in with more soil or organic material like shredded leaves and they will rot through the winter...ontop, and if you can get any cow or horse manure , fill in the top with that and turn into the soil..the last thing you want is to put clay where it is not...the organic material will hold moisture, clay will not..so if the box hold moisture you wont have to water as much, roots will go down to the moisture, roots hate clay...
That's what I did with my last raised bed. I added logs and tree branches to the bottom to take up the slack, then added my soil mix on top of that. I have access to horse manure behind my barn but it is mixed in with pine wood chips that I used for bedding. Plus, it grew more weeds then I care for in my garden which I tilled in, on ground.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
902 Posts
That's what I did with my last raised bed. I added logs and tree branches to the bottom to take up the slack, then added my soil mix on top of that. I have access to horse manure behind my barn but it is mixed in with pine wood chips that I used for bedding. Plus, it grew more weeds then I care for in my garden which I tilled in, on ground.
then fill the bottom with that manure and it will rot and any weed seeds will not grow being buried at the bottom...but use year old manure and chips, so the chips arent fresh..
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
3,723 Posts
just watch what wood you put in the bottom avoid walnut, not too much oak, and most conifers. Pecan does very well in hugelkultur. I have a couple of beds surrounded and raised by old soft pecan and they do pretty well
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
150 Posts
then fill the bottom with that manure and it will rot and any weed seeds will not grow being buried at the bottom...but use year old manure and chips, so the chips arent fresh..
Ok,the manure with pine wood chips have been part of my bullet backstop for several years, has some hay compost in it too from my hay burners.
 
1 - 20 of 37 Posts
Top