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Does clover take the piss?  RSS feed

 
sam na
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Hi I'm planning on planting up the paths between my salad beds with white clover. I'll cut the paths with a lawnmower now and again and put the clippings between the rows of salad.

I also have urine available from a separating compost toilet. I was thinking I could put the dilute urine onto the clover and then some weeks later (*after rain!) mow and dump it between the rows of salad. Will clover absorb the extra nitrogen? I assume it will but couldn't find anything to confirm this.

I found this: "The return of urine to the sward increased production from the grass species; the clover content of the sward was reduced." http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1365-2494.1961.tb00220.x/abstract

Has anyone done this or similar?

Thanks

Sam
 
John Wolfram
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Location: Lafayette, Indiana
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While fertilizing an area may not directly hurt the clover, it does make the area more hospitable for species like grass that compete with the clover.
 
John Brower
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sam na wrote:Hi I'm planning on planting up the paths between my salad beds with white clover. I'll cut the paths with a lawnmower now and again and put the clippings between the rows of salad.

I also have urine available from a separating compost toilet. I was thinking I could put the dilute urine onto the clover and then some weeks later (*after rain!) mow and dump it between the rows of salad. Will clover absorb the extra nitrogen? I assume it will but couldn't find anything to confirm this.

I found this: "The return of urine to the sward increased production from the grass species; the clover content of the sward was reduced." http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1365-2494.1961.tb00220.x/abstract

Has anyone done this or similar?

Thanks

Sam


I usually just pee on my trees.
 
Isaac Bickford
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Location: Okanogan County, WA
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Clover has a competitive advantage over many species in that it fixes nitrogen. If you fertilize nitrogen fixers, they tend to stop fixing their own nitrogen (why work for something you can get for free). Meaning you've lost their main benefit. Fertilizing with nitrogen also removes clover's main competitive advantage, meaning other species that are more efficient in a fertile soil will tend to increase. In pastures, if clovers and other bloat-causing legumes start to get too high, a common practice is to fertilize with N, which results in the increase of grass and decrease of clover.

I would suggest you find a different use for the urine. The clover WILL probably soak it up and store it in leaves, but it would do that anyway through fixed nitrogen if you don't fertilize it.
 
sam na
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OK thanks all.

Maybe I should apply the urine to Comfrey instead and mulch with that in addition to the clover..

Or just apply it direct to the salad bed, being careful not to get it on the leaves..



 
John Saltveit
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In general, plants that are lacking in nitrogen tend to be on the yellow side, and when you give them more nitrogen they green up. I usually pee on the plants that need the nitrogen the most and then share the wealth onto the others, as they green up. In this way, you're getting your maximum benefit from your mostly nitrogen fertilizer, urine. It will also burn less if it's gently shared among many plants, focusing on those that need it. Remember to dilute it, especially if your soil is dry.
John S
PDX, OR
 
Dave Dahlsrud
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Location: North-Central Idaho, 4100 ft elev., 24 in precip
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Using the urine solution on the comfrey is probably going to get you the best bang for your buck. While comfrey is pretty hardy and resilient, it really responds well to copious amounts of nitrogen. The urine will really do a number for your comfrey! It'll take up quite a lot of nitrogen, and then make it available to your other plants when you chop and drop.
 
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