Sunday, May 15, 2011

Correct mulching method for weed control - Bhaskar Save's way of farming

I am reading Vision of Natural farming by Bharat Mansata about Bhaskar Save's way of farming. Mulching method followed by Bhaskar Save..

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Weeds cut from a plot of 100 sq.ft will never provide a thick enough layer to fully cover entire 100 sq. ft. It may be adequate for 40 sq. ft or for 25 sq ft or perhaps just 10 sq.ft, depending on density of weed growth.If sunlight penetrates through a layer of mulch that is too thin (less than 3 inches), weeds may grow back vigorously again.More over, with light mulching, cut weeds will not come in close, direct contact with the soil, to enable the soil organisms to do their work of decomposition.In such condition weeds will just dry up in air,without getting integrated in the soil as humus (My opinion about this statement is that it will happen, but may take more time??)

Thus, if 25 sqft is the area that can be adequately mulched, at least 3 to 4 inches thick, with the weeds from 100 sqft that is what the farmer should stick to, unless additional biomass can be obtained from an external source.The fresh weed growth from balance 75 sqft would again need to be mulched on a quarter of that area.....

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This made sense to me, since in my paddy field the mulching was not sufficient and weeds growth were more. If I had focussed on a smaller area from grass from other areas and slowly convert the whole area, it would have been much better.

Recently I made some raised beds and kept on mulching them with weeds from nearby places, walkways and they are building up nicely. If everything goes well, I may plant paddy on these raised beds.