DEMONSTRATION OF SPEED AND EASE OF NO–TILL GARDEN CONSTRUCTION

Posted by on 9/27/2015 to Library

DEMONSTRATION OF SPEED AND EASE OF
NO–TILL GARDEN CONSTRUCTION

(1995, Jay, Oklahoma)

We constructed this 15′ X 33′ (4.5m X 9.9m) no-till Hydrosource/Sunbelt bed in June 1995 in one hour and 25 minutes, leaving it with 35 zuchini, yellow crookneck squash and cucumber seedlings planted in the Booth Planting Tubes. There was no ground preparation except to mow the weeds and buck brush. Prior to installation of the Sunbelt, we spread one pickup load of cow manure on the garden, plus added 15 lbs. (6.8 kgs.) of Hydrosource Standard (2-4mm).

The site is heavily shaded and we always lose 2-3 plants per year from limbs falling from the 150-year old chinquapin oak tree (Quercus muehlenbergii) which overhangs the garden. Aside from these two problems, the cucurbit/tomato production from the bed over the past two years has been relatively good. The Hydrosource rate of 30 lbs. per 1000 sq. ft. (13.6 kgs. per 91 m2) appears too low at this site to support truly high yields during 50-day or longer drought periods, and 50 lbs. (22.7 kgs.) would likely be more appropriate.

The use of Booth Planting Tubes minimizes Sunbelt damage for future years, thus eliminating virtually all possibility of weeds. Labor each new year is dramatically reduced. For example, it took only about 15 minutes to replant the 35 plants for the second year (1996). With use of a water soluble fertilizer spread over the permeable Sunbelt for rain to leach into the Hydrosource CLP and the untilled ground, annual maintenance for the 10-year projected life of the garden is basically limited to the usual disease/insect control and harvesting issues.

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Copyright 1995 by Daniel J. Wofford, Jr, and Dale Greenwood.

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