But what about nutrient drain? Do you have to know that for tomatoes, for example, they'll need more X this year because they've been in this spot for X years? I thought that was more the reason for rotating. This plant will deplete the Calcium, Nitrogen or whatever from this spot.
Mike Turner wrote:One of the hallmarks of a Fukuoka style vegetable garden is that many (most) of the vegetables self-seed themselves and eventually evolve into half-wild landraces adapted to the local growing conditions and pests.
That's the direction I have been taking my South Carolina zone 7 garden, allowing strong, healthy specimens of non-hybrid vegetable plants to scatter seed for the next generation of veggies. I'm trying to build up the population of dormant veggie seeds in the soil so an increasing proportion of the "weed" seedlings that pop up in the beds will be half-wild vegetables.
So far, I have had great success with carrots, seed matured and scattered in late spring remains dormant all through the heat of the summer and germinates when the temps cool off in late summer.
Lemon cucumber is also self seedling well, this summer's lemon cuc production was all produced by self sown seedlings that came up at the proper time in the spring for cucs to start growing and beat all of my seeded cucs to maturity.
Matt's Wild Cherry tomato has completely naturalized in my garden, coming up everywhere. I just weed them out from whichever parts of the garden that I don't want cherry tomatoes to grow. They have even spread into the local pasture where they provide quick snacks when I pass by. They also come up in the cold frames and grow slowly all winter long producing by far my earliest spring tomatoes, weeks ahead of the transplanted tomatoes.
Leaf amaranth is another that I haven't had to seed for the last few years, coming up every spring on its own and corn salad, its winter counterpart, does the same in the fall for winter greens.
Lettuce is starting to become a self-sown half-wild winter annual in the garden, producing some interesting variants as it adapts to local conditions. Last winter one lettuce plant went through 8F lows unprotected with no damage and turned into a monster in the spring, producing seven 5 to 8 feet high flowering stalks in late spring/early summer. Its progeny are starting to pop up now around the garden.
Seminole winter squash/pumpkin self seeds and it is just a matter of thinning the many seedlings down to those plants I allow to grow to maturity.
I have started domesticating wild garlic in my garden for use in the fall and winter, taking advantage of a hardy edible weed.
Other then that, I had some self-seeding success with pole beans, cowpeas, adzuki beans, and various types of onions (green ,bulbing, anual, and perennial).
It'll be interesting to see where this experiment goes, but its getting to the point where many of the seedlings that appear in a bed when I harvest or remove a crop are self sown vegetables whose seeds are released from dormancy along with the weeds once the root competition of the extablished crop is removed.
Jamie Jackson wrote:But what about nutrient drain? Do you have to know that for tomatoes, for example, they'll need more X this year because they've been in this spot for X years? I thought that was more the reason for rotating. This plant will deplete the Calcium, Nitrogen or whatever from this spot.
Mike Turner wrote:Plants self-seeding to some extent, but still require external seedling to maintain populations: miner's lettuce, lettuce, corn salad, yard long beans, pole beans, cucumbers.