No-till Soil and Its Effects on Gardens and Cannabis
Not tilling soil can improve plant health and reduce environmental damages. Here are the advantages and disarranges of no-till and some ideas to keep in mind.
For hundreds of years, humans have practiced agriculture. We found that tilling the land changed the soil and reduced weeds. A no-till garden consists of leaving the earth in its place and not replacing it at the end of the season, allowing the soil’s nutrients and moisture to create a self-sustaining environment.
Advantages of Tilling:
- Evenly moves organic material around making nutrients more evenly distributed.
- Aerates topsoil
- Kills Weeds
Disadvantages of Tilling:
- Soil can’t hold as much water
- Fewer nutrients in the soil
- Reduces beneficial insects and microbes
- Causes erosion and runoff
More fertile soil from the start
Because the soil is not tossed out and replaced each harvest season, the land can feed off itself. Within this nutrient-rich environment, the terrain can thrive. The soil can maintain this top-notch condition by relying on its organisms, bacteria, and fungi. Macro-organisms, like earthworms and rove beetles, also compliment this process. Because the soil is not ecologically interrupted or damaged through the turnover process, water absorption and retention are protected. This allows for maximum nutrient sustainability. Season after season, nutrients continue to recycle themselves and, thus, retain their overall effectiveness rather than having to start all over again each season. Because of this, a garden or cannabis plant can grow in a healthy, nutrient-rich environment from day one.
Increased water absorption
Tilling the soil can be damaging to the cannabis plant, as the air dries out the soil and the water content is decreased, if not eliminated. Because of this, the plant becomes more vulnerable as the soil works to maintain sufficient moisture rather than providing for the plant. In the undisturbed setting of a no-till soil garden, an environment is created where water absorption is maximized and can be maintained at a higher, more productive level. This is is also great news for cannabis plants.
Less waste – with this type of garden there is less waste, which is good news as foreign or harmful materials are eliminated from compromising the plant’s all-important habitat.
Tilling loosens soil causing runoff and erosion. Every year millions of pounds of soil are lost from tilling. If the soil was fertilized then the nutrients are transferred to the ocean. An increase in algae growth from the added nutrients and depletes oxygen, killing marine life. This problem can be stopped by reducing fertilizers, using a foliar spray, and reducing tilling.
Keeping weeds in check
Because you are not tilling another method will be needed to keep weeds in check. For a non-chemical way to reduce weeds, use mulch. Plastic or natural mulch blocks weeds from getting sunlight and growing. Using the right fertilizer can also help reduce weeds. Using a precision fertilizer like a foliar spray reduces the nutrients that weeds receive and you’ll have fewer weeds.
Whether you grow cannabis or tomatoes, a no-till garden can be utilized.
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