angela woolly
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Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 1:15 pm
Location: midlands

New vegetable plot

i have a new walled garden which I have dug and put lots of manure into it. We are renovation the house slowly and therefore the garden is not going to be planted for at least a year. I intended to cover the plots with terram to stop weed growth in the meantime. Is this the best thing to do? Please help

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gixxerific
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Location: Wentzville, MO (Just West oF St. Louis) Zone 5B

not sure what terram is probably a weed block I assume.

if you are not going to plant until next year. Lasagna garden/sheet-mulch would be ideal. The manure is fine, did you till it in or mix it in at all. Manure should be mixed under right away to avoid losses of nitrogen to the atmosphere.

You could add leaves, preferably shredded or broken up, grass, straw anything organic. Compost Compost Compost would be great as well. If you let that all sit and break down next spring mix it all in and you would be good to go.

Oh yeah I forgot to mention if you do the above you shouldn't need the weed block. All that organic material will be the weed block. To make sure, part of lasagna gardening, you can put down wet newspaper or cardboard than layer everything on top of that. You said you were remodeling so I, again, assume you will have a lot of cardboard laying around. What better way to recycle it than in your garden.

Google or search this forum the term lasagna gardening or sheet mulching see what best suit you. They are basically the same thing and a great way to start a garden.

Good luck any more question and someone here will be along with the answer.

Dono :D

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applestar
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Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

A heavy mulch cover that will prevent new seeds from sprouting and/or make it easy to pull out weakling sprouts is an excellent suggestion.

I'll also offer up another option: cover crop

If you don't intend to mechanically till, it will be easier to use something annual so they'll die in fall and the dead foliage will act as winter mulch. Does it get cold enough in your area to freeze?

I think easiest summer cover crop would be buckwheat especially since you've added manure and won't need that much nitrogen.

My favorite is nitrogen-fixing clover but they're biennial or perennial and will come back next spring. I LOVE Yellow Sweet Clover (Melilotus officinalis) for the WONDERFUL fragrance of seeds, leaves, and flowers. Honeybees and bumble bees love clover too.

Oat is another that is supposed to work well, but it will winter over if it doesn't get cold enough. Annual rye will die off though. But if you sow either of them now, they will grow to maturity, so you'll need either cut off the seed heads or allow them to mature and harvest, and you'll have to deal with big mature straw and cut off stubble. I usually plant oat and rye in late summer so they die before getting too big.

Sow the seeds thickly and they will crowd out/keep new weeds from sprouting/growing.

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