The Soil. Improving The Soil. Methods, Measures. Soil Fertility. Recovery, Preservation. Natural

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The Soil. Improving The Soil. Methods, Measures. Soil Fertility. Recovery, Preservation. Natural
The Soil. Improving The Soil. Methods, Measures. Soil Fertility. Recovery, Preservation. Natural

Video: The Soil. Improving The Soil. Methods, Measures. Soil Fertility. Recovery, Preservation. Natural

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Video: How to Make and Maintain Soil Fertility 2023, February

The content of the soil under black fallow has a centuries-old history, but science has proven, and practice has confirmed that in recent years, or rather decades, a more progressive system is making its way to replace this system - sod-humus, when the soil in the garden is sown with perennial cereal grasses and not dug over for years. This system is widely used abroad (USA, Canada, Germany, England, Holland, etc.). But more on that later.

Let's take a closer look at the black steam system. First of all, it is used where it is not possible to water gardens, and the amount of precipitation per year is less than 600-700 mm.

Dug garden
Dug garden

© ndrwfgg

Meanwhile, this system also has significant drawbacks. They consist, first of all, in the fact that when digging the soil, the gardener causes serious damage to the roots of the tree, after which it is overburned. In addition, with repeated loosening after precipitation or watering of trees, the soil loses its original structure, from coarse-grained it turns into powder and makes it difficult for air to flow to the roots of the tree. This is one of the major flaws in the system.

To restore the original structure of the soil, the gardener must apply organic fertilizers in the form of humus, etc., at least once every 3-4 years. And finally, the disadvantages of the system include the threat of tree roots freezing in years with little rainfall or with a complete absence of snow cover. This is especially typical for our Dnipropetrovsk region, where the so-called "cold frost" often occurs - a snowless winter with low temperatures, up to minus 25-30 °. Snowless winters and severe frosts can generally destroy fruit trees, and especially in those cases when the gardener did not do water charging in the fall. A few more negative aspects of the black steam system could be cited, but these are enough for the amateur gardener.

Now let's look at the sod-humus system. It is recommended by science for use where more than 600 - 700 mm of precipitation falls, or it is possible to water plants or irrigate the soil in the garden. This is one of the basic requirements.

Sodding the site
Sodding the site

© jspatchwork

The sod-humus system is not new in itself. As practice has confirmed, it is progressive. Let us dwell on its advantages over black steam.

First of all, as a result of the soil keeping under turf, moisture persists for a long time after watering or rain. In addition, the soil in the garden does not have to be dug for decades, which, of course, greatly facilitates the maintenance of the garden. The roots of the tree are not damaged, since when the soil is kept under black fallow, its structure is better, which has a beneficial effect on the condition of the plants; the quality of fruits - their taste, sugar content, keeping quality - is higher. This has been proven by many years of research, for example, by scientists from the Kabardino-Balkarian Experimental Station and the Uman Agricultural Institute. There are much more bacteria in the soil with turf than with black fallow. The bark of trees is more resistant to damage by diseases and pests (especially to the leaf roll, which often affects up to 69-85% of fruits in Ukraine).

Thus, the sod-humus system of soil maintenance in gardens has many advantages over black fallow.

The best known are two methods of keeping the soil according to the sod-humus system. The first is when the soil in the garden is sown with perennial grasses, they are regularly mowed (8-12 times per summer) and left in place. For many years, the late Moscow Region amateur gardener MI Matsan kept the soil in this way in his garden. He covered his garden with meadow fescue, ryegrass, bluegrass (a mixture of these grasses) and regularly mowed with a lawn mower, leaving the cut grass on the sod. The mown young grass quickly rotted and the trees received a "portion" of organic fertilizers… In addition, MI Matsan did not remove the leaves from under the trees. But the leaves contain on average 0.84% ​​nitrogen, 0.57% phosphorus, about 0.3% potassium and trace elements: zinc, cobalt, manganese, etc. And it is not surprising that the garden, without receiving any organic and mineral fertilizers (except for nitrogen), yielded crops.

As shown by the results of analyzes carried out at the Research Zonal Institute of Horticulture of the Non-Black Earth Belt, the presence of a thick layer of turf and the grass itself increased soil fertility.

Rear area (Sodding)
Rear area (Sodding)

© Aroobix12

But do not close your eyes to the disadvantages of this method. In order to regularly mow the grass when it reaches a height of 10-12 cm, it is necessary to have a mower, since it is almost impossible to mow such a grass stand by hand with a scythe or a sickle: short grass slips out from under the scythe. The lawn mower no longer "takes" grass 20 cm high. Yes, and this grass decomposes in a completely different way than a young one, so gardeners are forced to harvest the overgrown mowed grass by hand in order to compost, and only after a year or two will it return to the garden in the form of organic fertilizer after decay. Time consuming work again.

But this is not the only point. If the grass becomes coarse, it requires 5-7 times more moisture, its roots, penetrating deep into the soil (almost to the same depth as the height of the stand), "eat up" those organic and mineral fertilizers that are applied to the soil. That is, a gardener who has allowed the overgrowth of the grass must, as with black steam, apply fertilizer to the soil at least once every 3-4 years. Therefore, an indispensable condition for keeping the soil in this way is strict adherence to the mowing time - almost weekly, and not everyone can work with the mower.

The same difficulties arose in the gardener N.P. Sysoev. He is a disabled person of the Great Patriotic War, and digging the soil and mowing is almost beyond his strength. First, he covered the trunk circles with ryegrass and failed. That is why he gladly took advantage of the advice of the scientist NK Kovalenko to sow the garden with the bent grass, or "creeping". 12 years have passed, and during this time he never dug up the soil in his garden of 600 m 2, never cut the grass in it. He also does not remove fallen leaves. He grows high yields of apples and pears every year. Apple trees and pears do not get scab. The quality of the fruit is good. They are large, brightly colored. The leaves are also large, dark green.

Sodding the site
Sodding the site

© Richard Webb

Analysis of the soil in his garden, carried out by the zonal agrochemical laboratory, showed that both the soil and the leaves of the trees have a sufficient amount of the substances the plant needs.

So what kind of sod-humus system of soil maintenance in the garden is better - the method used by M.I.Matsan, or the one by N.P. Sysoev? I think that both are good and both can be recommended for amateur gardeners. There is no doubt, however, that the maintenance of soil in the garden of NP Sysoev requires significantly less labor costs.

G. Osadchiy, candidate of agricultural sciences.

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G. Osadchiy, candidate of agricultural sciences

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