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Planting- no till- wheat and other grains  RSS feed

 
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It's really late in the season so I'm not sure how to prep the ground for Wheat or other grains. 

I'd like to plant in the spring.  Are there better options than wheat(I'm already planning on corn).

I'd like something hardy that provides a good crop.     

Maybe do a small patch of something as a test run and then grind it for bread and baked goods.

I know there are some ancient grains out there that are gluten-free, have higher protein etc.

I don't want to till so I'm thinking about putting a tarp down to kill the grass.  I can't see planting a crop like this in a chipped area, maybe I'm wrong.

Overall I have no clue how to plant something like wheat to get even distribution or If I should be mixing grains, something like multiple grains and wildflowers, to create a polyculture.



 
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Now is a great time to sow grassy grains. Just throw seeds out onto the ground. Some will avoid getting eaten by predators. Some will germinate, and grow a little bit all winter long, and be ready to have a good shot at out-competing the existing vegetation in the spring. The sooner they get into the ground (after about September) the better chance they have of getting ahead of the weeds.

I really like grains that grow 4 to 6 feet tall in no-till settings. Not many weeds will be growing taller than them... Winter rye is my favorite for growing in non-tilled areas which on my farm are called the wild-lands.
 
Scott Foster
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Joseph Lofthouse wrote:
Now is a great time to sow grassy grains. Just throw seeds out onto the ground. Some will avoid getting eaten by predators. Some will germinate, and grow a little bit all winter long, and be ready to have a good shot at out-competing the existing vegetation in the spring. The sooner they get into the ground (after about September) the better chance they have of getting ahead of the weeds.

I really like grains that grow 4 to 6 feet tall in no-till settings. Not many weeds will be growing taller than them... Winter rye is my favorite for growing in non-tilled areas which on my farm are called the wild-lands.



Thank Joseph!


Are you suggesting that I pull the grass up and plant?  Or can I just drop it into a grassy area?  I'd have to wait until spring if I use a tarp.
 
Joseph Lofthouse
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I wouldn't expect a tarp laid on the ground to do much killing of grass before spring. Is the grass currently dormant? My wheat and rye are currently growing, even under snowcover.

I'm not an advocate of no-till farming, and I especially wouldn't plant anything into a grassy lawn, but I observe plenty of wild rye growing in the wildlands. It sprouted with the fall monsoons in about September, and has spent all that time getting ready to out-compete the slower growing grasses in the spring.
 
Scott Foster
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Joseph Lofthouse wrote:
I wouldn't expect a tarp laid on the ground to do much killing of grass before spring. Is the grass currently dormant? My wheat and rye are currently growing, even under snowcover.

I'm not an advocate of no-till farming, and I especially wouldn't plant anything into a grassy lawn, but I observe plenty of wild rye growing in the wildlands. It sprouted with the fall monsoons in about September, and has spent all that time getting ready to out-compete the slower growing grasses in the spring.



The grass is not dormant yet, it has been unseasonably warm in N.W NJ.  It was 52 degrees when I got in the truck at 7 A.M.  I just ordered some organic winter rye and some vetch.  I guess I'll bust the sod up with a rake and overseed and spread some around trees and in some chipped areas.
 
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So I ran phase 2 of an experiment this year growing small grains directly in my lawn. Unfortunately our landlord sold the house and we had to move out before all the harvest came in, but it was a largely successful season. The yield looked like is was less than my control plot, but I couldn't say for sure by how much.
 
Scott Foster
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Nick Kitchener wrote:So I ran phase 2 of an experiment this year growing small grains directly in my lawn. Unfortunately our landlord sold the house and we had to move out before all the harvest came in, but it was a largely successful season. The yield looked like is was less than my control plot, but I couldn't say for sure by how much.[/quote

Nick,

I will direct seed some rye and vetch in the lawn too, just to test it out.    Thanks for the info.

Regards, Scott

 
Nick Kitchener
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A few pointers...
You need to somehow get the seed below the root mat layer that grass tends to form. I used a lawn edger to cut slits into the lawn, and then inserted a tube into the slot, and then dropped a seed into the tube. I found that I needed to also blow down the tube to shoot the seed out the other end and deposit it properly. Tedious but it got the job done.

You then need to mow the lawn so the seedlings get some sunlight. I set the mower low initially, then raised it as the seedlings grew up.

At first you will barely be able to tell there are any seedlings at all. But don't worry, they're there. As the summer progresses they will eventually grow taller than the other lawn grasses and you'll spot them.

I found that the germination / seedling success rate is lower in the lawn than in the control crop. I suspect it's to do with how I'm planting them (essentially an open crack in the ground). Anyway, I would recommend you plant 30% denser than you would otherwise do to compensate. In my experiment, I found the density wasn't high enough to stunt the lawn growth, and this is something that I think is also desirable.
 
Acetylsalicylic acid is aspirin. This could be handy too:
What would you cook first in a rocket oven?
https://permies.com/t/89866/cook-rocket-oven
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