Since we are at a new place, we have to start a new garden bed.
We've got a 24x40-foot area fenced off. Now we have to kill the lawn grass. We have settled on black plastic.
I remember a year or two ago several people on here were talking about gardening through plastic like this to help keep weeds down. I see how we can easily cut holes to put in plants. But what about direct-sow seeds, things like lettuce? Do you just cut out an area to sow? Any guidance??
Our neighbor/friend swears by no-till. He uses glyphosate to kill the grass (not something we wanted to do, hence the plastic) and then just plants away, right among the dead grass. Says it works great. Does that seem feasible?
We have big ambitions but our skills are low (gardening seems to be a weak point for us, despite our enthusiasm for it), so any advice is welcome. I'm also looking for suggestions on a vine we can grow on the perimeter garden fence that might have some hope of surviving the occasional passing goat.
Mama Lissy, Brown Swiss (due 3/31/22) Noelle, Hojo/Fleckvieh (due 11/28/21) Miss Ellie Bones, Red Holstein heifer (due 11/20/21) Pickles, Jersey/Red Holstein (fresh 9/23/21) Pippi, Pickles' Dexter/Hojo heifer calf Plus chickens, pigeons, ducks, dogs, turkeys, rabbits, and goats
I agree plastic mulch is the quickest/easiest way to enable a garden, and really helps with weed suppression those first few years. Here's a photo of my neighbor's garden as an example. We use a broadfork to turn the soil first.
Belle - Normande x Jersey cow Willow - NZ Jersey heifer Pringle and Bandit - heifer calves
I gardened in black plastic for a few years. It worked well for me for big things like squash and was frustrating for the smaller things like lettuce and radishes. You might want to put some of the small things in a raised bed and do square foot garden type planting in them and use the black plastic for the big rangy things.
For direct seeded crops I use landscape fabric butted up close but leave room for the seeds to germinate. So basically the landscape fabric is your path, and this really reduces weeding and keeps the moisture in your soil. This stuff works great and lasts years. It's nice for clean paths and makes harvesting so much easier. I do till so I pull it up each year and put down again at planting time. I do use some of the plastic mulch too for transplanting things like tomatoes, peppers, and squash mostly because I need the heat to help them ripen even in my high tunnel. The most time consuming part of gardening this way is the setup, add amendments, add drip irrigation then plastic mulch and then you're good to go for the season. www.ebay.com/itm/Woven-Ground-Cover-Landscape-Fabric-Heavy-PP-Weed-Barrier-Garden-Mat/373504366405
when I first started my garden a few years ago I used a huge tarp on the ground to kill the grass and weeds. It worked well and tent stakes held it down. Last year I had lots of weeds (bumper crop ). This year I will use landscape fabric I got from Wally World. I did splurge on the heavy duty cloth. I get squash bugs really bad and am hoping the cloth will solve that problem (may need to get some ducks for that ). The cloth allows the water to go thru to the ground so I can still water. I will leave a space for the row crops and cut holes and plant seeds in the holes for things like lettuce. I also have an electric net fence and will use the cloth to keep grass and weeds from growing in the fence. Should have done that last year.
Just when I think I know everything about cows, my girls let me know that I don't know anything!
Post by grammagrace on Apr 19, 2021 12:43:25 GMT -5
Used black plastic for years for the bigger stuff. Also used for green beans. My mom planted beans in hills some years. So I did that with the plastic. When I plant through plastic I work the dirt through the hole as much as possible to give the roots an easier grow. Now I'm trying to switch to raised beds. Problem with that for me is getting the dirt to fill them. Wishing you a plethora of garden goodies.
susaq, try planting onions and/or garlic around your squash. They kept the potato beetles at bay from my spuds, so I don't see why it wouldn't work for squash beetles, too. You could plant the onions/garlic in pots and put them around in areas where the vines will go.
Hubs - our resident gardening expert - used the Ruth Stout approach to his gardening last year. We grew and gave away bushels of veggies with a reduced need for watering and no weeding at all. There are several youTube videos and articles about her gardening efforts online.
**We doubled down on the process this year by wintering my three remaining cows and the donkey in the garden space and moving their bale feeder throughout the space to evenly cover the soil with waste hay. He will plant his started plants through the old hay and then plant seeds by pulling the hay cover aside to expose the soil until the plants are big enough to remulch. He was planning to put out his started plants around the first of May but we got 4 inches of snow here yesterday, so it may be a little later.
First, please do not use glysophate/Round up. You don't want that stuff on your food.
I've used black plastic and loved it. You can also kill things with cardboard (peel off any tape) with mulch on top or thick layers of newspaper with mulch on top.
You can also use clear plastic. (Solarizing the soil) Water the area well, cover it with clear plastic and cover the edges with soil to keep all the heat in. The heat/water will sprout everything and the intensity will kill it off. I've done that in some areas and been amazed that in 3 years the weeds were still less than any other place.
You may be just stuck weeding things like lettuce, etc, until you get your garden in better. But solarizing an area works great for later using as a place to grow greens or something you can't mulch well.
And I'm also a fan of "weedless gardening" like 3cows talks about. We haven't used a tiller in years.
claytonpaul: A bull was put on her herd Late Last May so she was expected to be due between May1 and August. They quoted me August so I wouldn't be disappointing by a late arrival.
May 23, 2019 13:07:11 GMT -5
Trim: I'm baaaaacccckkkk!
Aug 31, 2019 17:57:22 GMT -5
alpacalexi: My mini jersey cow is pregnant, however the last couple days her udder has deflated. My vet saw her on the 23 and said delivery in a couple weeks Is there a reason for her deflating?
Oct 2, 2019 17:17:00 GMT -5
Trim: She probably aborted a while back. That happened to one of my animals. She was bagging up but within a short while of her "due date" she began to deflate. I had no idea what had happened. I was seriously bummed out.
Feb 8, 2020 20:46:23 GMT -5
mamacherri10: good afternoon! I have not been on the website in a long time. Have a new jersey milk cow and am looking to see how long she needs to be dried up prior to calving? She is due the third week of May.
Mar 10, 2020 14:33:11 GMT -5
steven888: Dry her up now, she needs 6 wks of rest.
Apr 1, 2020 2:05:11 GMT -5
highlandteen: five to six weeks is generally suggested
May 7, 2020 14:39:23 GMT -5
biubiu: I think that CBD oil will be more popular. Because in is nice product for medicine and for simple guys.
Sept 15, 2020 14:31:42 GMT -5
guernseygirl: Can someone let me know if my pictures are showing up in the Auction Barn post? There should be 5 photos
Sept 20, 2020 20:58:54 GMT -5
wyatt: I treat cow s like people when doctoring.
Dec 15, 2020 22:54:52 GMT -5
ashlyn911: This is Fern! She’s an almost two year old heifer (Jersey/Brown Swiss). Her due date is Sunday.
Jun 17, 2021 0:49:56 GMT -5
hjp: Any tips on how to add a photo to a post?
Aug 24, 2021 18:13:11 GMT -5
correll17: We just purchased a dexter cox that is bred, due in April. We brought her home and was walking the fence, head butting the fence, so we got another dexter, now she is constantly headbutting her. Any ideas?
Sept 20, 2021 10:14:56 GMT -5
gentlepaw: At Gentle Paw, we want to not only create pet products but also create a safe and happy environment for all of our furry friends.
Sept 26, 2021 20:11:59 GMT -5
This book is intended as an inspirational manual for keeping a family milk cow. A lifetime of practical experience has been bound into one volume. Practical advice for the everyday and procedures for cow emergencies. Plus, answers to FAQ's like, 'Should you get a cow?' and 'How Much Space do I need?'