Emergency planting

General tips / questions on seeding & planting

Moderators: KG Steve, Chantal, Tigger, peter

Barry
KG Regular
Posts: 350
Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 11:18 pm
Location: Central Kent
x 7

Emergency planting

Postby Barry » Sat Apr 02, 2016 10:34 pm

Given my uphill task of erradicating weeds in time to create soil in which I can plant things, it has occurred to me that, despite my efforts, I am going to enter the main planting season with a massive shortfall in available land.

Time, therefore, to think out of the box.

I've already had to plant my first earlies in a trench back filled with manure, even though the area in which it has been placed is covered in horrible perennial weeds. Both second earlies and main crops will get the same treatment.

However, I am thinking that tomatoes, cucumbers, corgettes, sweet corn and all sorts of beans will have to be planted in exactly the same way: dig hole in ground, fill with well rotted manure, add plant.

I've racked my brain to see whether there are any reasons why any of these crops shouldn't be thus planted, but can't think of any. Can you?

After all, during the height of summer, I just have to water a little and clear away surface weeds, which will help when I once again return to serious ground clearing in the autumn, after all the crops have been harvested. Well rotted manure is not a problem; there is tons of it in the field next door.

Better than nothing, wouldn't you say?
0 x
User avatar
Pa Snip
KG Regular
Posts: 3091
Joined: Sat Dec 06, 2014 8:20 pm
Location: Near the big house on the hill Berkshire
x 795

Re: Emergency planting

Postby Pa Snip » Sun Apr 03, 2016 7:11 am

Morning Barry

There is still time to get your plot in order, people do seem to want to be in a hurry to get seeds sown and plants such as tomato and sweetcorn in open ground.

Afraid I don't have a answer or know which way is best to advise you.
How overgrown with weeds is your plot because what does concern me is that weeds tend to out grow crops.

Perhaps I shouldn't mention manure :roll: :D but I fear the use of it in the manner you suggest may encourage the surrounding weeds more than your crops.

Now this thought goes completely against normal advice and is merely a suggestion, one that I would not normally advocate.
The pitfall with this thought is that I have no idea which type of weed you are dealing with or how tall it is or for that matter if there is any bramble involved.

Hire a big chunky rotavator and turn the whole lot in as deep as you can get it. Trying to remove as many of the perennial weed roots in the process as possible.

That idea should provoke a healthy response to your question

Good luck, hope you find a way of catching up on the weed chores.
0 x

The danger when people start to believe their own publicity is that they often fall off their own ego.

At least travelling under the guise of the Pa Snip Enterprise gives me an excuse for appearing to be on another planet
Westi
KG Regular
Posts: 4769
Joined: Thu Oct 30, 2008 4:46 pm
Location: Christchurch, Dorset
x 838

Re: Emergency planting

Postby Westi » Sun Apr 03, 2016 6:05 pm

What about putting down weed suppressant membrane and growing what you want to through holes punched into that in appropriate beds. If you mulch the cut out hole that will serve to stop the weeds under growing through & keep in moisture for the plants you put in.

With this down over the Summer when it is warm, it should clear the standard weeds completely & weaken the tough ones. You can get it in various widths like they use in industrial greenhouses.

Westi
0 x
Westi
Monika
KG Regular
Posts: 4336
Joined: Thu Jul 06, 2006 8:13 pm
Location: Yorkshire Dales
x 702

Re: Emergency planting

Postby Monika » Sun Apr 03, 2016 7:01 pm

I can't say we have ever tried to plant vegetables into a weed-covered bed, but I knew an allotment holder some years ago who rarely weeded - his plot looked a mess but he grew some marvellous stuff all amongst the weeds and even won prizes with them! So it is possible ....
0 x
Beryl
KG Regular
Posts: 1588
Joined: Thu Nov 24, 2005 6:06 pm
Location: Gosport, Hants.
x 10
Contact:

Re: Emergency planting

Postby Beryl » Sun Apr 03, 2016 7:16 pm

Personally I think you should treat your plot like you would a new house. Get the foundations right and it will give you many years of good crops. I remember when we first started out it was in May we grew nothing for the first year at all; spending all our time clearing, digging weeding etc. and getting the soil into a good condition. It was hard watching other plot holders taking home their produce but it was worth it.

Beryl.
0 x
Barry
KG Regular
Posts: 350
Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 11:18 pm
Location: Central Kent
x 7

Re: Emergency planting

Postby Barry » Sun Apr 03, 2016 8:18 pm

Thanks for all the input.

I have a roll of mypex, so I suppose I could use that to grow some crops through that.

If I wanted, I could also wait until next season and, as suggested, get the basics right. Sadly, since moving here, my wife has been unable to get her VA business off the ground, so we are struggling financially. I just have to offset that by growing some food!

I already have seeds to grow plants from and also potato tubers, procured when we were much better off. Since my manure is free, I want to leverage that as much as possible, hence the plop filled trenches into which my spuds are going.

You see, in many ways, it doesn't matter if the weeds grow above ground around the things I have planted; I own a digging hoe and they are brilliant for skimming the surface and removing weeds from baked clay surfaces; and I can hand weed anything that comes out of the manure filled holes.

As previously noted, I began clearing this plot in mid-July of last year and it really is impossible. The twitch has been growing happily since 1985 and to clear a square metre of it properly takes at least an hour - and I am not exagerating, since in the winter, during the rain, it often took double that. Utter misery at times.

Currently, I am concentrating on getting my asparagus and strawberry beds clear and planted, having spent most of the winter on putting in a boundary fence, raspberries and five fruit trees. But there isn't enough time to clear more land to meet the planting schedule. Hence having to think out of the box.

Since my raspberry canes are quite small, I think I will use some of the one metre wide strips into which they have been planted to grow other crops, such as onions and beetroot; I wouldn't normally, but it seems a pity to waste so much land.

I should point out that land not currently under cultivation is covered with plastic; but as soon as I take it off all the seeds lying on the surface germinate.

I think I am going to get rather good at hoeing this year, don't you :D
0 x
Westi
KG Regular
Posts: 4769
Joined: Thu Oct 30, 2008 4:46 pm
Location: Christchurch, Dorset
x 838

Re: Emergency planting

Postby Westi » Mon Apr 04, 2016 7:02 pm

If you take the plastic off & let the weeds start growing & then put it on again, it will kill them off really quickly. The next lot of weeds will be slower up, so if you pop seedlings in there they will be above the weeds so it will be easier to hoe off the weeds without damaging the seedlings. Remember to keep your hoe edge sharpened, makes the whole thing quicker & easier.

Let's face it we are never going beat the weeds, but we can tame them a bit! If growing is important financially, I know you don't want to fail, but there are so many seeds in the pack - just sow in seed trays now & when weather warmer back up for losses with direct sowing!

Good Luck!
Westi
0 x
Westi
Barry
KG Regular
Posts: 350
Joined: Mon Dec 12, 2005 11:18 pm
Location: Central Kent
x 7

Re: Emergency planting

Postby Barry » Mon Apr 04, 2016 8:45 pm

Hi Westi, thanks for that. Sadly, the weeds I am talking about are nasties, such as twitch and bramble. At some stage, they will have to be dug out, or spray out or smothered for about 12 months. I'm doing all three!
0 x

Return to “Best practices”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests