Saturday, April 11, 2009
I spent two long afternoons earlier this week weeding and mulching the veggie beds. I took lots of pictures when I finished, admiring my hard work.
Then I found out today that hardwood mulch is not good for veggie gardens because it gets into the soil and robs it of nitrogen. Grass cuttings or leaves are recommended for mulching tomatoes, but we have no grass and most of our leaves are already in the compost pile. What to do?
Alfalfa hay to the rescue! Leaving my usual three-mile diameter ant path comfort zone, I headed to Callahan’s General Store to buy my first bale of hay. Not only does it deter weeds, it keeps the soil cooler and adds nitrogen to the soil as it decomposes. And it smells good. While I was gone, husband Kurt removed all the hardwood mulch I’d applied the other day and turned some compost piles.
The alfalfa bale was extremely compressed, so we pulled it apart and chopped it up with hoes (and eventually a saw) to make it easier to spread.
The alfalfa hay mulch looks allot shaggier than the hardwood mulch, but I look forward to seeing how it works.