Monday, May 11, 2015

Sufferin Succotash

Sufferin Succotash is the catch phrase popularized by Sylvester the Cat in the Looney Tunes cartoon series. You didn't know you were going to get a little depression era pop culture in this post.

Succotash on the other hand is a dish made from a mixture of corn, beans and other vegetables.

I use the phrase to describe a new technique for soil building that I have been trying.

 Here is this years version....

Last weekend I planted oats, field peas and tillage radishes on about 1/2 acre and lightly incorporated the mix.  That is my succotash.

I'm trying to build soil with polycultures of different plants. The oats are a grass. The peas are a legume. The radishes are a deep soil conditioner and will hold the nitrogen generated by the peas.

I plan to till strips in this field in a few weeks and plant my squash and pumpkins in the strips. The vines from the squash can run out into the succotash and we will get very good weed control while building soil.

Notice the similarity to the three sisters that the Native Americans planted. Corn (a grass), beans (a legume) and squash or pumpkins.

I'll let you know how it turns out. I have done similar things other years with good results.

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