[NAFEX] of raspberries and peas; and transplant disease contamination

Road's End Farm organic87 at frontiernet.net
Sun Jun 28 13:00:05 EDT 2009


On Jun 27, 2009, at 9:13 PM, fuwa fuwa usagi wrote:

> I have started to get an interest in inter cropping fruit and 
> vegetables.  My first experiment has been planting snow peas (Super 
> Sugar Snap for those who care on the North side of my everbearing 
> raspberries (cut to the ground in spring) in a row oriented east to 
> west.   It seems to work fine.  However I am worried about introducing 
> disease etc to the soil and am wondering what people' thoughts son 
> this are, and if you have particular combinations you have tried 
> (maybe onions planted between strawberries?)

I would think that if anything you would be reducing disease/pest 
problems, because you'll have unrelated things growing next to each 
other instead of a solid patch of one thing. However some things do 
have apparently unrelated hosts. I'd check with Cooperative Extension, 
and with the neigbors if possible, as to what problems are prevalent in 
the area; then ask Extension what all the hosts are, and mix in things 
that aren't hosts with the plants that you're worried about.

Also, be careful where you buy your seed and/or transplants; start your 
transplants yourself, from clean seed, if possible. There's a commotion 
right now because apparently the big box stores sold home gardeners all 
over the Northeast a lot of tomato transplants infected with late 
blight, and we're now all, commercial and home gardener alike, praying 
for the weather to dry out. Everyone, if you buy any plants, this or 
any other year, please make sure that the people you're buying them 
from know what they're doing and are being careful!

On a more specific intercropping note: I like to plant my garlic where 
an old strawberry planting just came out, because the strawberries are 
grown in straw, and the garlic likes all that organic matter buildup in 
my clay-rich soils. They're not there at the same time, though; this is 
more of a succession trick. I've heard of planting garlic around peach 
trees to discourage borers; when I tried this the garlic didn't do 
much, but there were grasses as well as garlic present, which might 
have been the problem. Also, maybe I planted the garlic too close to 
the trunk -- this was years ago -- you might try just outside the drip 
line for less shading.

I also have perennial herbs next to orchard trees, partly to help keep 
the beneficial insect encouraged.

--Rivka
Finger Lakes NY; zone 5 mostly
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