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Green manure

The term was first proposed in the nineteenth century by French scientist Jean Ville. Earnings. Sense of putting of green manures in soil is in using aboveground herbs which are specially sown plants.
Green manure – are plants which are grown temporarily on free plots of soil to improve the soil, enriching it with nitrogen and inhibition of the growth of weeds.
One of the important rules of organic farming says taht soil should never be without vegetation. Open long time areas of soil are inclined to significant deterioration of the structure and impoverishment.
The value and importance of green manure cultures is not just in excellent substitute for traditional organic fertilizers. In modern conditions of deepening specialization and concentration of private households agricultural production is reducing the rotation period of crop rotation, high saturation of single-species or biological properties similar in cultures, which led to some tension in the phyto sanitary condition in agro zones. That is why green manure are getting more important for the efficiency of crop rotation and maintenance of soil fertility.
Choosing a particular green manure plant it is necessary to take into consideration climate, soil, organizational and economic conditions of the farming zone. Particular attention should be paid to seed because the seed cost is the main item of expenditure in the production of green manure.

- In rows between edible and ornamental plants;
- As the adjacent fast-growing plant among late plants (such as parsnips, celeriac, onions, etc.);
- between harvesting and new plantings;
- In the off-season, late summer and autumn before winter;
- for letting soil to take a rest from heavy use for the whole year.

Reducing of leaching of nutrients. In winter nutrients (including nitrogen, potassium and magnesium) are intensively leached from soil. Growing green manure before, after and in between major crops, followed by incorporation into the soil trapping of these substances in the fertile layer.
Loosening of soil. Green manure effectively loose the lower layers of the soil through their roots, facilitating their access to air and moisture, creating normal conditions for major crops. This feature of green manure plants with an extensive root system is particularly useful in heavy compacted soils that poorly absorb water.
Nitrogen fixation. Nitrogen the main reserves of which are concentrated in the atmosphere is an essential element of food that is necessary for normal growth and development of plants. Nodules bacteria living on the roots of leguminous plants accumulate nitrogen that the plant got from the air, soil and enrich it. That is why legumes (peas, beans, vetch, clover and lupine) in rotation are sown before planting and green leafy crops which heavily deplete the soil.
Protecting the soil from erosion. On the slopes ground is particularly susceptible to washout the top layer of rain and meltwater. Green manure Plants with their strong roots hold soil particles, thus preventing leaching of nutrients. The result – due to high content of organic matter light soils keep moisture better. Heavy soils on the contrary loose soil and easily pass water into the deeper layers.
Saving humus. Green manure increases the content of organic matter in the soil, which serve as a kind of reserve for necessary nutrients for plants, something like energy source for many beneficial microorganisms. Microorganisms, in turn, secrete nutrients that improve soil structure and positive effect on plants. Consequently, the main crops are growing more rapidly and produce higher yields.
Inhibition of the growth of weeds. Green manure plants quickly develop a thick green mass, without giving any chance to survive weeds between. Mustard, Phacelia, rye have the ability to delay seed germination of weeds. Lupine crops or marigolds that grow not so fast, you should weed to the formation of dense green mass.
Pest Control. Green manure sown among vegetables partially take on the challenge of garden pests, and partially discourage them from landing, just knocking them confused. At the same time bright and full of nectar flowers of green manure plants are able to engage in landings beneficial insects, bees and bumblebees.
The suppression of nematodes. Nematodes – it is small worms that penetrate the roots and destroy their shell, opening the way for fungi, bacteria and viruses. They really deplete the soil. Good suppress nematodes spreading marigold, oil radish, yellow mustard.
For green manure plants legumes are often sown: angustifolia sainfoin, alfalfa seed, vetch ravine, clover, lupine, ornithopus that enrich the soil with nutrients and improve its structure. They also use oil radish, mustard, Phacelia, buckwheat and mix, for example: vetch ravine + oats seeds and more.

Mustard is characterized by rapid growth of the vegetative mass. Already in 30-40 days it is mature for cuting. Thanks to its fast maturity ability it is used as green manure, sowing even in later periods (late July – early August), after harvesting crops. Yield of green mass is reaches 200-300 kg / ha.
The best period of sowing of mustard is early period, while with early crops. Note its valuable property as a natural herbicide. It reduces the weediness these crops in crop rotation. In this regard, mustard green manure is better to sow crops after harvesting. Its sown usually in three-line method. On fields with height weed level it is better to use wide-sown lines. It is good for green manure at the flowering stage – early formation of fruit (pods).

03_sideratOilseed radish
In modern world oil radish is relatively new plant for green manure plants. Especially important it is for growing on poor soils and heavy soils because it improves physical properties of the soil, reduces the risk of injury diseases, increased harvest these crops. This is water-loving plant with a short growing period (45-50 days from sowing to flowering). It generates 300 kg / ha and more high-protein green mass. They Sow radishes using an ordinary method in clean crops. Also they add it to corn for green fodder in the phase of 3-4 leaves. It is ready for being green manure in the budding phase – early flowering.


Lupine crops is considered to be one of the best green manure plants. This biological ameliorant: it plays a crucial role in increasing the fertility of marginal sod-podzolic, sandy and sandy loam soils, improving their physical and chemical properties. Lupine gives green mass yield of 350 kg / ha or more. It is the best nitrogen detent, nitrogen and gradually mineralzing remains of plants and virtually washed out. Symbiotic nitrogen lupine is easily accessible, environmentally friendly and cheapest of all types of fertilizers. Lupine is planted in a steam box spring at the same time or after the early crops, and nutrient and cutting – immediately after harvesting predecessor. The most common way of sowing is the usual row. lupine is ready for green manure in the phase of formation of beans, because at that time it accumulates a maximum amount of nitrogen.
Additional sowing of lupine are carried out in spring for the main crop. After harvesting the main crop lupine starts to grow rapidly and accumulate green mass, which is used for fertilizer. Lupine cutting for green manure is held in the early phase of flowering – bud, favorable moisture conditions, elevated mass could fishery again, and again it is used as green manure.

Due to fast growing especially in the early phases Phacelia is grown for green manure. This annual one cut culture, which is not affected by pests and diseases, well suppresses weeds, undemanding to soil and growing conditions. It is best sown in a mixture with leguminous plants that grow quickly.
The yield of green mass of Phacelia is about 300 kg / ha.
They use a the usual row method for sowing, as you can sow it in spring and summer.



Sweet clover is also effective green manure plant. It has the ability to accumulate a significant amount of soil phosphorus, potassium, calcium, and sulfur, what contributes to its fertility. Sweet clover is also used as ameliorant to absorb saline soils. For one mowing clover you get 350-400 kg / ha of green mass. It is sown mainly under the cover of early grain crops, annual spring mixes, corn for green fodder. Clover can be grown in pure clean sowing. Sown is usually held by row method along with cover crops. Cutting for green manure is held in the budding phase – early flowering.


02_sideratSpring vetch
Spring vetch is also good green manure plant. This is one of the most popular annual legumes. But it is better to sow green manure mixed with oats. For high-level farming yields of green mass vetch-oat mixture reaches 250-300 kg / ha or more.
Method of sowing is a row that provides uniform seed placement in the square. This well-vetch plants suppress weeds. Ravine vetch is sown with oats very early, at the same time with early crops. In phase of bluish beans cutting for green manure is carried.


06_sideratWinter vetch
Winter vetch is used for green manure as well. Planting of winter vetch in pure form is not effective because of lodging herbage yield and reducing green mass. Therefore, it is best sown in a mixture with winter crops (mainly winter rye). Yield of green mass mixed with winter rye is 300-400 kg / ha.
When sowing mixtures can be sown simultaneously vetch of winter rye, but it is better to sow them separately. Originally vetch is sawing (12-14 days before the optimum sowing rye). Then the stairs winter vetch, its successful overwintering, smaller loss in winter.
Method of sowing – the usual line. In the phase of flowering vetch (before mowing rye) they held cutting for green manure.