[Market-farming] Loss of Soil Carbon After Tilling

Lee Neill lneill at mo-net.com
Tue Oct 27 21:45:28 EDT 2009


I've been hanging around the fringes for a while, reading with interest all 
the posts from everyone and picking up some useful information.  I'm in zone 
6 and not really a market farmer (yet), but we built some raised beds and 
used them this year with modest success.  If you have time to respond to a 
personal gardner with hopes of producing enough to sell in the future, I'd 
like to ask about this solarizing idea.  I assume it's covering the beds 
with black plastic and letting them cook...but my assumptions have at times 
been wrong.  How do you do it and what are the benefits, and is it too late 
to do in SW Missouri?


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Garth & Kim Travis" <gartht at txcyber.com>
To: <gofish54 at centurytel.net>; "Market Farming" 
<market-farming at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Tuesday, October 27, 2009 2:12 PM
Subject: Re: [Market-farming] Loss of Soil Carbon After Tilling

> Greetings,
> We are in Texas, we grow heirloom veggies for the market, but also
> sheep, cattle, rabbits, turkeys and chickens.  I am zone 8B, so we grow
> veggies year round, but not in the same beds.
> My summer garden is tomatoes, about 20 varieties; melons,  about 6
> varieities; cucumber about 4 varieties; Peppers, mostly sweet usually 4
> varieties with one hot one just because.  While we have started to clear
> these beds, since the cucumbers and melons are now done for the season,
> the tomatoes are still producing as are the peppers.  Thus I use
> different beds for winter crops that went in a month ago.
> We solarize our beds from 2 to 4 weeks depending on how much sun I get.
> We have found it really helps keep down the pests and disease problems.
> I grow tomatoes in the same beds year after year.  We rake the top
> couple of inches to find the cocoons of the horned worms, my greatest
> enemy.  We have found that skipping this step gives us real problems the
> following year.
> Our summer and winter gardens are about 200' apart.  The winter gardens
> are just being started and still need lots of work.  We are just
> starting to grow winter stuff, as we decided to learn one season at a
> time.  We both learned to garden in zone 2, so a big difference from our
> childhood memories.
> Bright Blessings,
> Kim
> Mac wrote:
>> Where do you farm and in what zone?   How long do you solarize the
>> beds?  Does solarizing allow you to have a quicker rotation on your
>> crops?   thanks - mac
>> Quoting Garth & Kim Travis <gartht at txcyber.com>:
>>> Greetings,
>>> I do make a living with my no till gardens, but we are primarily tomato
>>> farmers so yes, I do use raised beds like a home gardener.
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