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  • in reply to: Broad Bean Update #70518


    Hi, I had a great crop from my autumn planted aquadulce broad beans.

    They have now gone over and have black spot or the equivalent. Can I compost the stems or should they be destroyed?

    Can I cut the stems, add compost and plant over the top to make use of the soil channels created by the rotting roots or do they need to be dug up and destroyed?

    Many thanks for your help!

    in reply to: Green manure – dig or no dig? #37594


    And but – my green compost says it should be down a min 12 months – if I compost in the autumn that will be 6 months max..

    in reply to: Green manure – dig or no dig? #37593


    Gosh Charles, you reckon I could sow the green manure straight onto where weeds are coming back!and then rough rake?

    That would save a lot of time and money…

    in reply to: Green manure – dig or no dig? #37587



    Would 14 tons of compost be about right?

    Best wishes

    in reply to: Green manure – dig or no dig? #37585


    Thanks so much for all your advice.

    When we cleared the ground in the autumn (with machinery that compacted the soil a bit, though left good furrows for planting), I had hoped to be able to seed with green manure to help keep existing weeds at bay as well as build soil structure before weeds took hold once more. I also thought this mix would be attractive to look at while I am deciding how to design and lay out the space. We were too busy with other jobs, clrearing and grass seeding elsewhere, so missed the best time.

    Now with our mild climate down here the weeds and grasses are back – perennial ones seem to be dock, thistles, nettles. Couldn’t see any couch and it is too early for bindweed. The land is adjacent to pasture and would have been taken from grazing pasture land. I don’t want the weeds to reclaim their former majestic ground while I am planning !

    So I guess I will need to mulch or polythene before sowing the green manure.

    Despite the expense of municipal compost, I am guessing that it would be less work to mulch with compost, sow green manure, wait 12 months plus (the seed mix is designed for 12 months minimum), then compost again before sowing eventual crops? Alternatively I would have to buy polythene, lay it, and work the soil before sowing green manure?

    Thanks so much all

    in reply to: Green manure – dig or no dig? #37564


    My internet connection just crashed jettisoning my reply – apologies if this is a repeat if the earlier message somehow got through!

    Thank you very much for your reply Charles, in light of what you say, might it be sensible to start with putting polythene down for a few months, then the green manure for 12+ months, sowing in say late summer, then mulch – though that would extend the time before I can start cropping…?

    Also how much compost shall I need for this area 200’x30′)? Cornwall Council’s subcontractor sell it by the ton.

    With many thanks to you and your fantastic site.

    Best wishes,

    in reply to: Green manure – dig or no dig? #37541


    Dear All,

    As a newcomer to this site could I ask if the following regime would work in your opinions?:

    We have recently moved into an old house in SE. Cornwall with a large garden. One SW!facing area 200′ x 30′ was formerly cultivated we think (orchard, poultry, bees and vegetables) but was terribly overgrown and neglected. We have cleared all the tall vegetation and redundant trees and won’t want to do anything with it for at least 12 months.

    I have bought some ‘soil enhancing green manure’ from GSS seeds ( Altaswede red clover 20%, Jeanne Italian rye grass 60%, Treposno Cocksfoot 20%), and had proposed to sow it in the spring, and then mulch clippings on top till we are ready to think about planting ( with a mix of vegetables, cutting flowers and fruit trees and bushes).

    Should I then start with the compost mulch directly on top, or will I need to dig or rotivate the crop in?

    Your collective wisdom and Charles’ especially of course will be much appreciated.

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