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pollinator
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This spring I'm going to remove sod in a specific area so I can plant perennials.  Any suggestions on improving soil fertility when there isn't time to let it sit for a year? 

Thanks in advance!
 
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Do you have a compost pile going? Making compost tea is a great way to improve soil fertility!
 
Scott Foster
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James Freyr wrote:Do you have a compost pile going? Making compost tea is a great way to improve soil fertility!



Thanks James .    I do have a compost pile!   I didn't even think of using compost tea.  My theory has always been sink or swim when it comes to planting.  What I mean by sink or swim is I pull the sod, plant Polycultures, and mulch.

I'm finding that's not a great plan for smaller herbaceous plants.     Are you using Korean Natural farming  techniques or making an aerated compost tea?

Thanks for the response.

Regards, Scott

 
gardener
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hau Scott,
Why do you want to remove the sod for perennial planting?
What I would do would be to cut the sod, turn it over so the roots are up, spread a layer of compost and then plant into that root rich, bioactive, overturned sod.
You most likely have a good bacterial soil medium already and wasting that resource would be a shame.
Adding a layer of compost just under the soon to decompose grass plants is a great way to get hyphae growing in that soil to work in unison with the bacteria.

Once you are all planted, use the compost tea to water in your new plants, that will supercharge the system you just set into motion.

Redhawk
 
Scott Foster
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Bryant RedHawk wrote:hau Scott,
Why do you want to remove the sod for perennial planting?
What I would do would be to cut the sod, turn it over so the roots are up, spread a layer of compost and then plant into that root rich, bioactive, overturned sod.
You most likely have a good bacterial soil medium already and wasting that resource would be a shame.
Adding a layer of compost just under the soon to decompose grass plants is a great way to get hyphae growing in that soil to work in unison with the bacteria.

Once you are all planted, use the compost tea to water in your new plants, that will supercharge the system you just set into motion.

Redhawk



Thanks for the idea Redhawk!  I would like to do this, beats loading sod into the truck and hauling it to the pile.

I guess I was worried about the grass sprouting up through the bed. I have a lot of rhizome grass, not sure what kind.   I don't really have enough good compost onsite yet,  I pretty much have wood chips.  I have a square yard of wood chips brewing with kitchen scraps but I don't think it will be ready by spring.

If I need soil it either comes from under the sod or I have to bring it in.  I love the idea of using the sod in place but I'm not sure how to do that. How would you do this with only wood chips?  Would you pull the sod, dig and plant and then wrap the sod around with a sheet mulch over the top?  Can you flip the sod and plant seeds on it?  I actually tried seeding an upside down sod bed with seeds from my butterfly bush but don't know the results yet.

Regards, Scott
 
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I have the same thing going on in my front yard, and I thought about posting an ad on Craigslist- free stuff for someone to come pull up the sod and they can have it. Landscapers do this, and it is generally gone same day.

I never thought about flipping the sod over, removing the plastic netting and letting it compost in place. I imagine that newspaper would have to go over it to keep grass from growing through, and to keep the C:N levels right.

Local arborists will generally deliver a load of wood chips for free if you call them. Also, mushroom farms are a great place to get quality compost-like soil for free if you're in a shortage of your own compost.
 
Bryant RedHawk
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If you have rhizome grass you do not want to put anything on top of the soil until the sun has had enough time to kill the rhizomes, just plant directly into the soil of the overturned grass. Once your plants are up about 3-5 inches tall it should be safe to start adding mulch cover.
 
Scott Foster
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Byron Bacon wrote:I have the same thing going on in my front yard, and I thought about posting an ad on Craigslist- free stuff for someone to come pull up the sod and they can have it. Landscapers do this, and it is generally gone same day.

I never thought about flipping the sod over, removing the plastic netting and letting it compost in place. I imagine that newspaper would have to go over it to keep grass from growing through, and to keep the C:N levels right.

Local arborists will generally deliver a load of wood chips for free if you call them. Also, mushroom farms are a great place to get quality compost-like soil for free if you're in a shortage of your own compost.



I like the idea of getting the left overs from mushroom farms!  That has got to be some supreme composting material.
 
Scott Foster
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Bryant RedHawk wrote:If you have rhizome grass you do not want to put anything on top of the soil until the sun has had enough time to kill the rhizomes, just plant directly into the soil of the overturned grass. Once your plants are up about 3-5 inches tall it should be safe to start adding mulch cover.



Thanks Redhawk!  I will give that a try.
 
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