Monday, April 18, 2016

mom's garden

moms garden IMG_5798

My mom's garden looks pretty good. I planted winter rye that did very well over the winter. I am gradually working on turning it under. I planted Super Sugar Snap peas at the far end of this photo and have branches in for support. Mom's garlic looks really good. It's about the 3rd or 4th year now that I have used a portion of her harvest for replanting.


donkenzie said...

So is the rye just a planting, not for food, but to prevent weeds?

kathy said...

Right, it's not just for food. Winter rye is used as a cover crop in the winter to prevent erosion and nutrient runoff during winter rains. It also adds some organic matter when you turn it under in the spring. I think it looks nice too.

I don't know that it would prevent weeds, but maybe it crowds out some of them. Any kind of cover crop, even a "weed" would be fine in winter as long as it doesn't go to seed before its turned under. The seeds would create more weeds during the season.

Clover, alfalfa and vetch are also nice cover crops. They add nitrogen but the grow slower than winter rye. I planted a mix of these at my community plot last October and didn't get much growth. I should have seeded them a month earlier I think.

Karen Anne said...

I have by design white clover in my lawn in zone 6. It seems to disappear over the winter and come back in the spring. So I am not sure it would function as a cover crop in this region, unless it is some other form of clover.

kathy said...

Yes. I grew an alfalfa clover mix this year. It was labeled a green manure. It didn't grow much in the fall, so it wasn't really a cover crop during the winter. It came up fast in the spring though and gave me lots of organic matter to turn into the garden. I wonder if it would have died back if I had planted earlier in the fall and had gotten a good growth before winter. It was Crimson clover. Very pretty.