[Market-farming] Buckwheat Questions

Janet Bachmann janetb at ncat.org
Fri Jul 8 13:59:12 EDT 2005

All these buckwheat questions!  I had to see what my husband's old 
(1967) book Principles of Field Crop Production says.  I have also heard 
that buckwheat is good at bringing up phosphorus.  A few quotes:

    Buckwheat is able to extract more nutrients from raw rock phosphate 
than are other grain crop plants. (p. 739)

    The plant has a tap root with numerous short laterals, which may 
extend 3 to 4 feet in the soil  The root system comprises only about 3 
percent of the weight of the plant, compared with 6 to 14 percent in the 
cereal grains. (p. 740)

    Injurious effects of buckwheat on subsequent crops on unfertilized 
land are attributed to excessive removal of mineral plant foods by the 
rapidly growing, shallow-feeding buckwheat plants. (p. 744)

My guess is that these injurious effects would happen only if the 
buckwheat crop were removed from the field, not if it were incorporated 
into the soil or left on the surface.
Fayetteville, AR

Marty Kraft wrote:

>I heard that buckwheat brings minerals up from below. Is this so?
>Marty Kraft
>Kansas City

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