[NAFEX] re: soil solarizaton

Bob Sorenson natvwine at cut.net
Tue Mar 23 14:51:20 EST 2004

on 3/23/04 10:09 AM, nafex-request at lists.ibiblio.org at
nafex-request at lists.ibiblio.org wrote:

> Has anyone tried solarizing the soil as a way of killing off grass, weeds,
> etc. before planting dwarf fruit trees, blueberries or various cane fruit?  I
> am in zone 5 near Lansing, MI.
> Thanks,
> Tom Volkening

Hi Tom
You'll probably get some direct answers to your question but this subject
reminded me of a soil solarization project I did a couple of years ago.

Here in central Utah at 6000' the air temps in the spring will warm up way
before the soil temps will. This means that combined with the short growing
season here it's really difficult to grow melons, tomatos and peppers.

I scrounged a flat plate solar collector from my neighbors yard, put it in
the bottom of the old adobe pit, hooked up 100' of pex buried under about 3
ft of topsoil, then up to the small storage tank on top then back down.
The water thermosiphoned great, heating the soil and I think it even
protected against a couple of late frosts. Best 'maters ever (in this town)

I have also used my fresnel lens to burn weeds, etc. (1200 F) Not
recommended for amateurs.
Bob Sorenson

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