Over Planting

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Crabbergirl

Super Moderator
Staff member
As an orgainc gardener I am always looking for the most effective and healthy way to garden. I have started something I have not heard of in years. It is called over planting. It is a great form of crop rotation and reduces the amount of soil removed from the garden by pulling old plants.
As a crop is at it's end , such as right now my broccoli is almost finished, I planted my corn in between the existing plants. I cut the stalks of the broccoli just below the ground as they die back, leaving the roots to compost naturally. It seems to be working well , I have done this with all the remaining winter crops such as greens, garlic, onions,and cabbage.
I like this because it also makes the garden always look full and never bare.

Has anyone else ever tried this and if so have you found that it was beneficial or did you have issues?
 

Kya D

Active Member
CG that sounds like a good idea. I have never tried it cuz we only have about 120 day growing season so I can't do it.
 

lynpenny

Super Moderator
Staff member
I have never tried it but let me know how it works for you. I really don't have the room for veggies and grass. I wanted grass for my grandsons to play on and I have it. They wanted to take my back yard home with them after spring break. They love that they get to go in and out without asking and play all day if they want. We have a fenced yard where we don't think they can get out when the gate is locked.
 

Crabbergirl

Super Moderator
Staff member
So far this is working pretty well. I planted my spinach next to my brussel sprouts and the sprouts are almost ready and the spinach is just coming up. I did the corn a couple weeks agon and now that it is up I am planting my sunflowers in between. I also planted my beets in between my onions and they should be ready together so when I pull they come out together. I'll keep you posted.
I planted my pumpkins, and spaghetti squashes together, hoping they will just climb over each other and take up less space. Hmmm we shall see.
 

farmerlon

New Member
As an orgainc gardener I am always looking for the most effective and healthy way to garden. I have started something I have not heard of in years. It is called over planting. It is a great form of crop rotation and reduces the amount of soil removed from the garden by pulling old plants.
As a crop is at it's end , such as right now my broccoli is almost finished, I planted my corn in between the existing plants.
Great idea... and appears to be a great way to reduce tillage.

I've done a bit of that, and it has worked well... I should do more.

Although, that would not work for the way that I like to grow corn. I "dig out" my corn rows, so they look like a shallow trench. That way, I have plenty of soil ready on the sides, to "hill" the corn as it grows. Starting the corn "low" in the trench really helps retain moisture around the roots, during dry spells. And, once it's grown and hilled, it would take a tornado to lodge (blow down) my corn.
 

kcb37

New Member
Going to try something similar this year.
I am going with a notill garden. I did till it several times last year, didn't get much due to a drought. But I have some rain barrels to hook up, and a few more on the way.

The idea of a notill or overplanting as I understand it is.
The roots do the tilling for you (in a way). The roots and worms will leave tunnels in the dirt allowing water to run down and not run off. This will also help keep the dirt soft. Walking on it will compact it though.
In a no till situation, the harvested/dead plants are left in the garden and used as mulch and weed control. This helps by returning nutrients used by those plants and covering the soil so you have little to no wind errosion, also because the soil can soak up water little to no water errosion. The remains of earlier plants help the soil to retain mositure also. Having the soil covered all the time also helps control weeds.
By not tilling you allow all the bugs to fully establish. (yes this means the bad one's can stick around) it also means the good one's that will kill them will stick around. Like a Parasitic Wasp for a Tomato Hornworm.
This is how I understand both methods.

No till also seems to take around 3 to 5 years to really see a big improvement in soil.
 


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