Saturday, August 15, 2009

Shredded Paper

Shredded Paper Facts

Obtained shredded paper from local banks and shredded office documents
Used cardboard to "contain" paper while laying it on soil
Created 3 layers using water to mat the paper

Shredded Paper Observations

Weeds were definitely suppressed
However, transplants did not grow or produce
Seeds germinated very slowly but did not grow
Plant samples were sent to Servi-Tech labs to be analyzed for N (results indicated less than 3% N)

July 10, 2009 No plant growth

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Horticultural Vinegar

Horticultural Vinegar Facts
1 gallon; $26.00
20% Acetic Acid (household is typically 5%)
Can be diluted to 10% and still be effective
Spray directly on dry leaves
Most effective on warm, sunny days
Contains Yucca extract to increase effectiveness
High acidity (over 11%) can cause skin burns and eye damage

Horticultural Vinegar Observations

Most effective on smaller weeds

July, 2009


Flaming Facts
Tractor mounted or handheld units available
Propane fueled
Pass heat quickly over small weeds
Water in cells boils and bursts the cells

Flaming Observations
Generally does not kill grasses
Certain vegetables will not tolerate heat
Works best if weeds are small
Larger weeds are more difficult to kill with flaming

Planters Paper

Planters Paper Facts
2’ x 200’ package $29.99
$ .15 per square foot
Getting more difficult to find
Biodegradable, mulching paper is designed to be used for one growing season
When the edges are secured, the crepe in the thin paper allows it to hug the soil and to efficiently pass on the heat it absorbs.
Porous to water, it effectively suppresses weeds and keeps vegetables from contact with the soil, reducing spoilage
Made from recycled paper containing a resin binder and an anti-microbial to stop decomposition at the paper/soil interface.

Planters Paper Observations
Edges must be secured.
Installation can be difficult.
Two feet wide barrier may not too narrow for market gardens.
Excessive moisture can accelerate decomposition

NRCS Weed Barrier

NRCS Weed Barrier Facts
Available from local NRCS offices
6’ x 300’ ($115.50) or 4’ x 300’ ($76.75)
$.06 per square foot
Keeps the UV rays out
Resistant tearing, puncturing and weed penetration
Long lasting and reusable
09 will be third year for some pieces

NRCS Observations
Surface gets very hot during peak of summer
6' may be too wide for market garden situations

Sunbelt Weed Fabric

Sunbelt Facts:
3' by 50'

3.2 oz/yard high-grade fabric blocks 99.7% of light Resistant tearing, puncturing and weed penetration
Approved for most government weed control applications
Typically lasts 8-12 years, according to the manufacturer who guarantees the product for 5 years against UV breakdown

Sunbelt Observations
Can be reused in market garden
Surface gets very hot during peak of summer

3' may not be wide enough for market gardens
Cost: $.08-.17 per square foot

Monday, August 3, 2009

Learning Center Workshops on 8/13/09

The Organic Weed Management Learning Center at the San Juan Basin Research Center will be hosting a set of workshops on Thursday, August 13th from 4-7:30 pm. They will include a Soil Analyses workshop by Dr. Phil Shuler beginning at 4 pm followed by an update on the techniques and data collection from this summer and then an introduction to the web-based resources available for participants during dinner. We have 14 different types of Organic Weed Management for Market Gardens being studied this summer. We’ll also take a look at our variety trials for potatoes, sunflowers, tomatoes and peppers.

Please RSVP to Beth LaShell
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