Safe - Sustainable - Ecological - Green Manure Crops
Phacelia Tanacetifolia Seeds
Phacelia is a very quick growing annual green manure that can be sown successfully from march till September. The plants grow up to 1m in height and is tolerant of cold temperatures so should survive the winter if it's not too severe.
Phacelia is particularly good at smothering weeds and have an extensive root system which improves soil structure. It will self seed to easily so if using it as a green manure it's a good idea to dig in before it flowers. If you are covering a spare patch of ground for a longer length of time let it flower, they are beautiful. Flowers will appear 6-8 weeks after sowing and will remain in bloom for 6-8 weeks more.
Phacelia is an excellent flower for attracting honeybees and hover flies. This excellent green manure can also be sowed near the vegetable garden to attract these beneficial insects and help keep your aphid population under control.
Enough for 25 square metres. - 75g
Sow March to September.
Why sow green manures?
As we know vegetable growing takes a lot out of the soil because we remove the a portion of the soils nutrients every time we harvest a crop. Green manures are just crops we grow to dig back into the soil and provide nutrition for the follow on crop. Different plants provide different nutrients but in the main we use nitrogen fixing plants as greeen manures as they capture nitrogen from the air and release it back into the soil when you dig them in.
Green manures are also grown as a cover crop for the winter months to protect bare soil. Nitrogen and other soluble nutrients can be washed out of uncovered soil in wet winter weather and can leave your garden soil lacking in the spring. The green manure crop will protect the soil and store valuable nutrients in their roots, stems and leaves. Green manures also surpres weeds meaning you will have less trouble clearing your plot in the spring.