September 17, 2009 at 7:49 pm #249676HerbmanMember
I am sure there’s another thread on this somewhere, but I can’t find it.
My green manure is about 6 weeks old and about 25cm high (it’s the only thing growing well in the vegie garden). Some got flowers while we were away, but only one of the varieties of plant – the rest are still fine.
Should I cut it back yet and sow some more?
Is digging it in or cutting it back & letting it rot better?
If it makes any difference, my plans for the bed with the green manure is to add more animal manure, dig in more food scraps then sow more green manure & cover it with more mulch. I intend to keep doing this cycle right through the summer so that next autumn / winter I will hopefully have some soil instead of fill in which to grow winter crops.
I have 4 beds that I’m doing this with all up – but the other 2 are about 3 weeks behind the first ones.
Thanks for your tips.September 17, 2009 at 9:08 pm #432796hillbilly girlMember
I try to cut it before it starts to show signs of setting seed.September 17, 2009 at 10:08 pm #432797GeoffKeymaster
Peak nutrients in the green matter generally occurs just around the time of flowering, typically the very moment before they start producing the flowers, but that might be a bit tricky to anticipate. Any time after that nutrients are being moved into seed production which basically drains the rest of the plant out.
To dig in or mulch is one of those religious questions. If you are going to be digging other manures in anyway then digging it in will make that easier, digging dry straw into the ground is not the easiest thing to accomplish.September 18, 2009 at 2:11 am #432798darlsMember
Yeah, yesterday I was looking at my own green manure that is growing so well in the fruit grove – some are abut 30 cm high. No flowers yet.
Wondered too when would be best time and how should I cut it with? Hoe it down into soil or just cut at stem and leave on top of soil?
I think I’ve sow about 4 different green manure seeds so its all mixed.
Thanks! :hug:September 18, 2009 at 10:08 am #432799HerbmanMember
Thanks for the advice. I will dig it in tomorrow. Like Darls I also have a mix of green manures so some of them have flowered quickly and some are no-where near flowering. So hopefully it will still work.September 18, 2009 at 10:16 am #432800bluezbanditMember
Peter Cundall always stamps it down then digs it in. Before seed setting as someone else mentioned.
DebSeptember 18, 2009 at 10:50 am #432801ccBearMember
Cut it leave it on the surface then add your manure and mulch. It will all break down and will save some hard work.
Give it a dig in before you plantSeptember 18, 2009 at 11:47 am #432802osakasuzMember
Some things are better dug, like alfalfa, so it’s a good idea to dig it in if you have a mix, I reckon.:tup:September 18, 2009 at 12:18 pm #432803sue eMember
i’d like some advice in this regard too. I olanted various kinds of clover;red ,white and one whose name i cant’ remember. it’s about 6ins tall. its in an area where i have previously had mushroom compost and the soil is quite good. what do i do now. can i just let it flower and self seed as i dont plan to plant anything there for a while and i don’t want to leave the soil exposed.or can i just cut it and use it as mulch elsewhere. i kinda thought it would be good to use it as a permanent supply of mulch for other beds as well a ground cover for this area. any ideas?September 19, 2009 at 11:40 am #432804AaronCMember
I bought the CSIRO clever clover kit from diggers which contains 2 types of clover Trikkala & Dalkeith, Bio Mustard & Lucerne (Alfalfa) http://www.diggers.com.au/articleCleverClover.shtml.
I planted both clovers & the mustard.
I live in Brisbane, over the last week I’ve noticed the clover starting to bolt and yesterday flowers appeared at the top of some of them, today I took to it with some pruning clippers until short stems were showing.
The instructions say you can do 1 of 3 things :
a) Leave to die a natural death after seeding (in which case you will most likely see them again near the end of winter)
b) Kill them just as they start flowering and dig in (along with the mustard)
c) Same as above, but just leave on top as mulch
I chose option c, only because I have staked drip lines in the garden bed and it would involve removing these. Although I still have to dig in the mustard (instructions say compulsory). I will also add a small layer of Lucerne on top.
From what I have read you will get the nutrients using either method, some say more from digging in, however if you dig in then you should wait 3-6 weeks before planting any crops, if left on top you can plant through it immediately.September 28, 2009 at 10:25 am #432805tulipwoodMember
I’m just setting up my mandala beds, not planting vegies till mid February. A bobcat formed it for me (I know, I apologised to the worms). So it’s a big bare earth circle right now. What I thought I’d do was cover it with organic sugar cane mulch to try to protect the soil as soon as I can, and plant green manure into it as well.
Questions: 1. Will this work? Will those seeds be able to push their way up through the sugarcane mulch?
2. Assuming it can, and back to the theme of this topic, should i cut it and try to get it back under the sugarcane mulch?
I’m just waiting for this wind to stop so I can spread the mulch now, and then for some rain so I can plant the green manure. Love to hear your opinions on this.
TulipwoodSeptember 28, 2009 at 10:40 am #432806NimrodelMember
Tulip, about 2 weeks ago I planted some lucerne into the front lawn – I am hoping it will out compete the weeds and I will slash it to put on the adjacent vegie beds. I just sprinkled the seed on the lawn then put a layer of sugar cane mulch, about 2 inches thick, straight on top and watered the lot in. The seeds are sprouting and popping up through the mulch now with no problems 🙂
Once you slash it I would just leave it on top – the green manure crop and the mulch will all just break down and work their way into the soil with the help of the wormies.September 28, 2009 at 11:25 am #432807tulipwoodMember
Thanks Nimrodel, that’s good to know. I just wish it would rain up here (SE Qld). I don’t want to plant until then ‘cos I’m on rain water only and would need quite a bit to wet the bed and keep it wet.September 28, 2009 at 8:36 pm #432808SonyaMember
Take a look at Green Harvest’s website on green manure crops – they have heaps of info http://www.greenharvest.com.au/seeds/green_manure.html
They recommend just chopping and dropping at flower stage, we do turn ours in though.
We’re using green manures over summer to keep the garden under control here in SEQ.
Just put a light covering of mulch over the seeds when you put them out just to keep the birds from eating them all.
We’re letting our woolly pod vetch go to flower because the bees and insects just love it.
We let our buckwheat go to seed and now that is just self sowing through the vegie patches and attracting a lot of beneficial insects with it’s little white flowers.
SonyaOctober 6, 2009 at 12:11 am #432809marigoldMember
My seed stache had a lot of outdated packets of seed – some dating back to 1995:confused:
I spread the lot – peas, beans, tomatoes, zuccini and sundry greens, over a new bed, not really with much expectation of anything germinating. It was a riot.:tup:
I also added some green lentils from the supermarket – that made for really cheap seed:)
When the lush growth was about a foot high, I turned the lot in.
You don’t have to buy special mixes. Soak supermarket legumes for a nitrogenous cover crop, or cheap bird seed mixes for speedy growth. Much cheaper:D
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