- hardy to zone 7-9, so they need to endure winter temp of up to -12º - 15º C
- drought hardy in summer months. Usual precipitation rates range from 600mm/m2 to 300 mm/m2
- high summer temps, up to 40+º C
- can grow in alkaline soils
- tolerates high calcium levels
- can grow in heavy soils; lime-clay or loamy-clay
Tj Jefferson wrote:
Elle has a great suggestion on sanfoin, but it is low growing. Vetches are often good for low cover as well.
TJ, you were suggesting to actually sowing those legume shrubs directly on the ground in order do become more drought resistant (and develop a better root system as well I guess).
Antonio Scotti wrote:Hi there and thanks for all of the quick replies!
For sure I am going to integrate cover crops / green manure in the aisles. I already pinned down which ones I can use in my situation which are vetch and oats, which is quite typical in my area, but intermixed with mustard since I need to continue the soil decompaction. Thanks for suggesting the alfa-alfa. I should look more into it for varieties that are more drought resistant. As for the sanfoine, I didn't know about it, it seems to be a very interesting crop to try out. The only thing is that the seed company that I was suggested says that it needs a freely draining soil, which is not exactly what I have there. But it surely is a crop I'll consider now when the soil type is appropriate.
I mentioned the soil type, but I'll be more specific now: silty-clay loam in the first 30 cm and clay loam deeper down (I think I specified it really badly in my initial post...apologize)
Thanks for suggesting so many options for woody shrubs or coppiced trees.
I think the siberian pea shrub can be a candidate for sure, but I'd need others.
Elaeagnus umbellata might be one of the or even Elaeagnus ebbingei if, as TJ mentioned, there is no restriction)
I think Caragana needs a more humid situation that the one we are in, and lespedeza bicolor also seems to need a more draining soil type. One of the big doubts that I have is if species that are said to be thriving in a specific soil type can't adapt at all to other soil types, for example if those that are said to be needing soils with good drainage might not adapt to clay soils....at the end of the day I don't need these plants to be productive in the same sense as the fruit trees will need to be, but I guess if the soil type is too challenging will eventually die or just their growth will be very stunted.
As for the suggested trees, I would rather not use them, even if just for the fact that need pruning every so often (especially the black locust). I prefer to reduce the amount of work if possible
and don yet have animals to do this type of work for me, nor would I want to introduce goats, for example, in a newly plated olive plantation.
So thanks so far for all the suggestions.
If anybody has more ideas please go ahead!
elle sagenev wrote:
Just thought I'd give you some of my growing stuff. I have caragana growing in as the backbone of my wind protection tree line and sainfoin on 4 acres and spreading. I have heavy clay soil, highly alkaline. I'm pretty high altitude. Very dry. 11 inches of rain a year. I also have vetch growing, though it does not reseed and regrown as easily as Sainfoin has for me.
I am the type of person to plant absolutely everything and just see what grows. Lots of failures but some startling successes too! Plant some. You might like it.