Tag Archives: urban garden

SOIL SOLARIZATION

In soil solarization, you harness the sun’s energy to kill weeds and bad insects/fungus/bacteria, which allows the good stuff to take over. It bakes the dirt into something more palatable to growing gardens. The term is fancy talk for “putting a tarp on some dirt.”

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We have been fighting this pesky vine plant that is growing on part of our future garden plot. As diligent as we have been with pulling them up and spraying them, they just keep coming back and I hate them. So we decided to take things large scale and kill them all at once (in large square sections).

To try soil solarization for yourself, you need:

  • Big tarp (preferably clear)
  • Something to hold tarp in place
  • Lots of sun/heat

1. Ideally, rake the area and pull and discard any weeds. Next, wet the area at least 12 inches deep. We sprayed ours with a hose for a little while. Enough for it to boil the weeds.

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2. Get out your tarp.

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3. Lay out the tarp to cover area, and then anchor in place. We used some rocks and pieces of wood.

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4. Wait. Since it is still hot weather here, and will be for a while longer, the sun should work in our favor to help us out. We plan on rotating the tarp around the area, and crossing our fingers real hard.

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THE CONCLUSION OF THE SICK CUCUMBERS

Long weekends are a wonderful invention. In the future, we see a world that revolves around them. When only the best of the best survive, long weekends will rise victorious.

Do you want to know what will not last until the end of time? These cucumbers.

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With the case of the sick cucumbers solved, it was time to deal with the aftermath. Since there was a chance the plants could have had an infection from bug bite weakness, we decided to pull the plants up and dispose of them in a bag, instead of tilling the nutrients into the soil. We cut off the vines, pulled up the roots, and then wrestled them and some of the surrounding mulch into a lawn bag.

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After everything was cleared away, we poured a little soil activator on the dirt, to help strengthen it, and covered it with some leftover straw.

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Once our other veggies are done for the summer, we have some plans to mix up our garden configuration. Think more than just a row of garden beds, but less than a tomato plant labyrinth.