08 August 2010

Green Manure

No, this isn't about what happens when your dog eats spinach! Green manure, sometimes called a cover crop, is another way to get more nitrogen and organic material into your soil.  This is my first go at one and I posted a picture last time of what the mustard greens looked like a couple of weeks ago.  The crop was grown from seed planted in late May.  They were about knee-high yesterday and it wasn't raining, so I decided it was time to dig them in.

Here are my second-favorite tools, after my Felco secateurs, my inherited Wolf-Garten interchangable head uber-tools:

First, I cut a big bowl of the taller ones and saved them for dinner... they were yummy sauteed with some olive oil, garlic and lemon!  Back in the garden, here's what I did:

I chopped the tops off the bigger plants:

Then, I loosened the plants with a metal rake..
added some organic blood and bone turned the soil with the hoe attachment...

...Put the metal rake head back on and levelled the soil, and viola!

I'll dig them in a bit more in a couple of weeks and put some pea straw on top to keep the weeds out.  For more about green manure, go here.  Next time, planting garlic.

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