[Market-farming] Tomatoes after tomatoes?

Allan Balliett igg at igg.com
Sun Oct 10 21:34:29 EDT 2004

>Do you turn the vetch in when you plant the tomatoes? I've heard that
>tomatoes do well with "vetch mulch"...do you know if that is a living
>mulch, or vetch that is mowed before planting tomatoes?

Lynn - THe first time I saw this it was used under kale and had been 
'crimped' down with a weighted roller that had ribs that 'crimped' 
the knocked down rye. They rye stayed alive but could not 'stand up' 
again. It was a beauty to behold. I subsequently tried my own version 
of this (stepping on a 2x4 I held by both ends in a loop of rope as I 
hobbled down the bed) The rye stayed down but the vetch climbed 
faster than the tomatoes and I was forced to cut it a few times 
during the season. This season I think  will be thinking about simply 
cutting the cover at tomato planting time and using the rye/vetch 
'straw' as the bottom layer of my tomato mulch. I'll cut with a 
rolling line trimmer or a hand weedwhacker, I imagine. I'll have 
something like 14 100ft beds of tomatoes. I'm also thinking very 
strongly of setting up almost grape-quality trellisis for tomatoes. 
I'm tired of Florida Weave, not liking how it holds the plants and 
would prefer something stable to hang the plants to. I'm just not 
sure that I want to make my future cultivations so tractor-proof, if 
you know what I mean!

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