I am planning my strawberry garden for this spring. Would straw be a viable
alternative to woven plastic matting for weed control? Would there be any
disadvantage to using straw? Also, what are some other organic mulches that
can be safely tilled under?
On Sun, 18 Jan 2004 02:35:03 +0000, David Bunch wrote:
Straw is excellent and what many commercial growers use in our area. I
might be tempted to try red plastic for mulching. It worked well with
tomatoes and supposedly promotes fruit production. Stay away from hay
since hay has too many seeds in it.
I just read a little about that . Strawberries grown with red plastic mulch,
smelled better, tasted sweeter, and yielded more fruit than with black plastic.
USDA in South Carolina report. (Pacific Horticulture /January)
The fact that hay has more seeds in it seems to be moot, since heavy mulch
keeps them from getting enough sun to sprout. I've used it for the last two
years with excellent results in flower beds, having come to hate the rolls
of plastic/black stuff I've tried.
The red rolls for strawberries sound like they do more for that plant than
just keep weeds down. neat.
That works fine to get rid of the weed seeds. Leave the bale out in the
weather for a month or so on a pallet until it begins growing on one side
and then turn it over until it begins growing on the other side. Then put it
some place where it won't be rained on and let it dry. Store the bales and
use them as mulch the following season. Very few weeds seeds survive to
sprout the second year.
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