[permaculture] organic no-till trumps Roundup

Lawrence F. London, Jr. lfl at intrex.net
Tue Jan 16 01:19:55 EST 2007

Keith Johnson wrote:

> http://www.newfarm.org/depts/NFfield_trials/1103/slideshow/notillroller1.shtml

Interesting equipment. If they're dealing with mostly weed-free turf and are using it
to stunt or kill existing cover crops or forage/grain/bean crops and plant seed all in one pass
I imagine they will get a lot of the previous crop returning in some form to compete with the new crop.
If their knock down pass with the roller keeps most of this from happpening then it may be a good thing.
If not then you'll have winter oats in your spring wheat which may present a problem
during drying and storage of harvested crop plus seeds left behind in the field may come back in another season to 
contaminate some other crop, i.e. wheat grain in orchard grass mowed and baled may make that hay unusable.

If you're making sileage out of it or using it for soil building or overplanting with a crop that is much larger,
i.e. corn after wheat, oats or barley, followed by more small grain or leguminous cover crop, that may work out OK.

They're going to be on that machine a long time if they are cropping more than twenty acres so it may be a boon for 
small farms with diversified production. Much more of this sort of innovation is needed for the future, just to keep the 
momentum  of the sustainable farming movement (used to be called the organic farming movement) going.

At Hillingdale Institute the same thing is accomplished using minimum but concentrated tillage toward the establishment 
of permanent notill raised beds; a lot of weeds and previous season's crops get knocked down or shallow-tilled under:


Lawrence F. London, Jr.
Venaura Farm
lfl at intrex.net

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