Coverings for the soil in the greenhouse
Utilise plant scraps from the garden to cover the soil in the greenhouse.
Summer and drought are upon us, which also means higher temperatures and a dry ground in the greenhouse.
To minimize evaporation, it is possible to utilise plant scraps from the garden to create coverings for the bare soil between the greenhouse plants. The process of covering the soil with loose coverings or other material is also called mulching and has a number of advantages. Besides watering less, you can do it all for free by using for example hedge- and grass cuttings, instead of disposing the scraps. In addition, the plant material slowly breaks down and continuously helps to improve the soil, benefitting your plants.
There are many options when it comes to covering the soil. We have gathered some ideas on how you can cover your soil, inside and outside the greenhouse. We recommend using materials, which are available in your garden or the neighbourhood. This way you are using the resources around you and have easy access to it all.
Ideas for coverings
- Freshly cut grass.
- Hedge cuttings/ leaves cut into small pieces.
- Plant material, for example comfrey leaves.
- Straw – also scraps from mushroom cultivation mixed with mycelium.
- Green manure plants, such as crimson clover and phacelia tanacetifolia.
- Coffee grounds for your ericaceous bed.
- Seaweed (thoroughly washed for salt).
- Low crops, for example leafy greens, herbs, tagetes.
- And probably a lot more…
Take your grass cuttings, washed seaweed, leaves or the material of your choice and spread a 10cm thick layer between the plants inside or outside the greenhouse. Keep adding a new material as the organic material decomposes. You can also sow different green manure plants, such as phacelia tanacetifolia or crimson clover, to cover any bare soil.
The advantages of covering the soil
- Coverings help to keep in the moisture.
- Coverings from organic material convert continuously into nutrients valuable for your plants.
- Your greenhouse soil will become less hard because you are not watering the ground directly and because of the decomposition of the organic material.
- Even though the coverings are placed around your plants like a duvet, the soil stays cooler than it would without, which can be especially beneficial on hot summer days.
- You will experience an increase in insect and micro life in the soil.
- Coverings help to reduce the growth of weeds, since they block out the sun.
- It is completely free and sustainable, because you are watering less and are using plants scraps from your garden.
Behind the Danish company TagTomat (in English ‘Roof Tomato’) is a skilled team whose passion is to create green communities and inspire to green do-it-yourself and do-it-together projects. Today TagTomat sells organic flower seeds and vegetable seeds, which are packaged with our seed packaging machines from 1895. It all began in 2011 in the heart of the neighbourhood Nørrebro in Copenhagen with just five self-watering plant boxes on a wheelie bin storage. You can read more about TagTomat at our website TagTomat.Get to know TagTomat
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