Growing your own fertilizer is possibly the cheapest and most effective way of improving your soil. I see that just recently a number of well known authors have been discussing the benefits of green manures and nitrogen fixing legume crops. Find out which seeds works best as a green
Green Manures are a vital tool for the eco-gardener or farmer. They are typically used during the winter months (but not always) to provide cover for the bare winter soil, to help increase nitrogen content of the soil and to help build soil quality and organic content.
Green manures are one of the cornerstones of the eco-gardener. They have the unique ability of accomplishing many things that the eco-gardener cannot do without using nature.
Benefits of using Green Manures:
1) Fixing ‘free’ atmospheric nitrogen in the soil for use by the next crop in the cycle.
2) Producing biomass both above and below the soil line.
3) Breaking up ‘over tilled or compacted soil’
4) Extracting deep lying nutrients, minerals and trace elements and bringing them up to the soil surface.
5) Providing ground cover over winter when there is very little protection on the soil surface.
6) Increasing the water retention ability of the soil.
7) Providing a beneficial environment for soil creatures to thrive.
8) Some are important sources of nectar for winter and spring pollinators.
9) When chopped back they provide almost instant soil protection as a mulch.
10) As it breaks down there is an extremely rapid release of highly available natural minerals and nutrients into the soil for use by your next crop.
List of Green Manures
A very beneficial clover to grow with Black Oats as a green manure. Assegaai Clover is a great nitrogen fixer.
High production of biomass both above and below the soil, it is vitally important in increasing the organic and carbon content of your soil.
A deeply rooted legume it is able to extract and bring deep sourced minerals and trace elements to the surface.
Lifts minerals and trace elements from deep down in the soil up to the soil surface
A massive biomass producer and will provide many kilos of above ground vegetation
White Clover is a great green manure to help increase nitrogen in your soil as it is a legume. It also does a wonderful job of loosening your soil with it’s long taproot
As a microgreen, they can be started in a soil mix for the best nutritional value.