A couple of weeks ago I sowed a green manure in the beds that were empty. I chose Crimson Clover because in the Spring I had seen some that was flowering in an allotment near our local school. It was beautiful. It had long, nodding fluffy heads of the most amazing red wine colour. When I saw it, I thought, my garden could do with some of that in the Spring time. And so here it is.
And boy does it grow fast! I’m assuming it grows quickly now, and then slows right down during the colder months only to spring back into action later. I do hope so otherwise my whole garden will be Crimson Clover pretty soon!
I’m actively trying to ‘put my garden to bed’ this Winter instead of just leaving the soil open to wash away with the rain and grow weeds. Having lush green growth at this time of year certainly beats bare empty soil.
Crimson Clover will germinate pretty easily now while it’s relatively warm but if you want to sow some green manure later in the season Rye Grass will germinate at lower temperatures. I’ve sown some of that too but it has yet to appear. I have heard that Rye Grass is difficult to dig in as it re-sprouts quite easily. I’ll keep and eye on that and report back.
But I really like the idea of using plants to improve the soil. It seems like the natural thing to do. I don’t know about you but I simply can’t make compost in the quantities needed to cover my whole kitchen garden so I need another way to improve my soil that’s easy and cheap.