• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education experiences global resources the cider press projects digital market permies.com private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • r ranson
  • Anne Miller
  • paul wheaton
  • Joseph Lofthouse
stewards:
  • Mike Jay
  • Jocelyn Campbell
  • Devaka Cooray
garden masters:
  • Steve Thorn
  • Dave Burton
  • Dan Boone
gardeners:
  • Joylynn Hardesty
  • Mandy Launchbury-Rainey
  • Mike Barkley

Crusty soil

 
Posts: 1
Location: Milwaukee, WI
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hello,

First post here. My wife and I are starting a small urban farm/garden on a community plot in Milwaukee, WI. here is a link to a post from my wife about it to give some background info. New micro-farm plot We recently planted seeds, and after a few good days of rain, followed by a couple very sunny & windy days, the soil is has a very hard crusty surface. Upon breaking through the crust, the soil is moist, but we are worried that the seedlings will not be able to break through. We have planted green beans, chard, basil, carrots, and pinto beans.
Any advice on what we could do to help ensure our seedlings will emerge? We are considering using a layer of straw mulch to help hold moisture in, or slightly breaking up the surface with a cultivator of some sort. Any input would be very appreciated. Thanks!

Jon
 
master steward
Posts: 4317
Location: Cache Valley, zone 4b, Irrigated, 9" rain in badlands.
1319
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

The beans will break through the crust, so no worries there.

The chard might make it through.

About the only way that I can germinate carrots or basil this time of year is to spray the row once or twice a day to keep the soil moist. Basil could be sown in pots and transplanted to get around the need to keep the top layer moist. Carrots can't be transplanted with much hope of success because they are a root crop.

 
pollinator
Posts: 8298
Location: Victoria British Columbia-Canada
642
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Wherever I spread coffee grounds, worms and other creatures cultivate the soil and drag material under ground. This might help with the crust.
 
Posts: 67
Location: Southeast Wisconsin, urban
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Well you are right about the beans. They are up and doing well. The pintos are up and the green beans are just starting to come up.

We've been keeping everything watered so I'm hoping that will be enough.

I like the coffee grounds idea. I'll try it. I'm also thinking of going to our city service lot and getting some leaf mulch and compost.
 
gardener
Posts: 5937
Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
885
hugelkultur dog forest garden duck fish fungi hunting books chicken pig homestead
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
the mulch and compost will do wonders for crusty soils. The crust is formed by clays usually and the more you do to give those clay particles things to cling to, the more they separate and the less crustiness you will find.
 
Why does your bag say "bombs"? The reason I ask is that my bag says "tiny ads" and it has stuff like this:
Food Forest Card Game - Game Forum
https://permies.com/t/61704/Food-Forest-Card-Game-Game
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!