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Author Topic: Drought-resistant cultivation  (Read 640 times)

Lingon

  • Joined Feb 2018
  • Uppsala, Sweden
  • The more I see of mankind, the more I prefer dogs.
Drought-resistant cultivation
« on: July 22, 2018, 01:06:00 pm »
With this second year of drought and a close to non-existent harvest, I would like to have tips on crops that not only survive the drought, but actually thrive, as well as tricks for needing less water.

This year I tested Tragopogon porrifolius for the first time, I have not watered at all, yet the root is already about a centimeter in diameter (late harvest or spring harvest) and has not looked dry even once. The  leafy goosefoot also thrives completely without water. The Tree onion and the sand leek are a both happy, but the chives withered away.

I have seen that the plants I cultivated in pots and watered, managed better than the same plant planted directly into the ground (same amount of water).

Then I need to water the tomatoes much less than my neighbor does because I also cover the surface in pots with grass cuttings.

I have noticed that gooseberry can handle better the drought than the currants (they stand next to each other).

The  wine producers in Sweden will get a fantastic harvest this year, so i'm planning to get some grape plants. I have never grown grapes before, do you know of a good book or web page  etc like "grape growing for dummies"?
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Alex_

  • Joined Jul 2016
Re: Drought-resistant cultivation
« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2018, 02:43:11 pm »
Not quiet the same as drought resistant but aquaponics reduces water consumption because it makes everything a plant needs more readily available. It worked well for me in the past.

Aeroponics is along the same line but i haven't tried that

macgro7

  • Joined Feb 2016
Re: Drought-resistant cultivation
« Reply #2 on: July 24, 2018, 08:37:26 am »
Aquaponics is a cool idea but you end up with vegetables with no vitamins because they can't get then from the soil.

Do you know why veggies in the pots with same amount of water did better? Because of more organic matter, I.e. in the pot you put 100% compost.

The beat cultivation for drought? Non-cultivation, I.e. no-till or no-dig.
Look it up on YouTube or Google. Instead of digging the soil up - which causes increased drying - mulch mulch mulch! I had no dig potatoes that did very well. Garlic is great.
We had no rain since May!
Growing loads of fruits and vegetables! Raising dairy goats, chickens, ducks, geese rabbits and a little boy on 1/2 acre in the middle of the city of Leicester, using permaculture methods.

Maysie

  • Joined Jan 2018
  • Herefordshire/Shropshire Border
Re: Drought-resistant cultivation
« Reply #3 on: July 24, 2018, 09:57:14 am »
Aquaponics is a cool idea but you end up with vegetables with no vitamins because they can't get then from the soil.

Do you know why veggies in the pots with same amount of water did better? Because of more organic matter, I.e. in the pot you put 100% compost.

The beat cultivation for drought? Non-cultivation, I.e. no-till or no-dig.
Look it up on YouTube or Google. Instead of digging the soil up - which causes increased drying - mulch mulch mulch! I had no dig potatoes that did very well. Garlic is great.
We had no rain since May!
I thought Aquaponics was Hydroponics, with the addition of raising fish in tanks (or similar creatures), so that their poo feeds the plants? 
ie Aquaponics is water grown plants with enrichment from other form of creatures poo kept as part of the same system,
Hydroponics was water grown plants with artificially added supplements?   

I am currently setting up my 'no-dig' veggie beds based on Charles Dowdings new book.  It all seems very plausible to me, but I do not have any results to show one way or the other at the moment. 

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Drought-resistant cultivation
« Reply #4 on: July 24, 2018, 12:01:00 pm »
I was amazed at my potatoes, grown in the ground as always, and earthed up as usual.  We watered them once when they were just through, and with the long drought we expected the tubers to be like stones (as the early crop is in the shops)  We started lifting them a week ago and found the tubers are just as large and healthy as in any other year.  We had mulched with grass clippings while we could still get to them, but no other treatments.  Perhaps our soil is wetter deep down than elsewhere as we had a winter of plentiful rain.  Also our soil has a high humus content with regular winter applications of manure and straw.  So perhaps it's partly a case of looking after your soil in the best organic way.
We collect rainwater in 1000 litre barrels - 5 of them - which water the polytunnel and the livestock, and they just lasted through with care.

In other parts of the smallholding, trees have died and the grass was brown and crispy.  We are getting plenty of rain now, but too late for many plants.
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Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

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chrismahon

  • Joined Dec 2011
  • Gascony, France
Re: Drought-resistant cultivation
« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2018, 01:13:20 pm »
Here a top dressing of mulch is essential to retain the water, otherwise the ground quickly sets like concrete and cracks. We were advised to use hay or straw but ended up using leaf mulch. We have a Stihl leaf blower and shredder so blew all our leaves into piles and sucked them into the shredder in Autumn, putting them into one pile (nice Winter nest for snakes), spreading the mulch in Spring. It's worked a treat, using far less water than the uncovered beds so in Winter we will dig the remainder in before repeating the process.

cloddopper

  • Joined Jun 2013
  • South Wales .Carmarthenshire. SA18
Re: Drought-resistant cultivation
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2018, 05:25:16 pm »
Getting as much straw & vegetable base compost as possible into your soil is paramount,  for the slowly decaying fibres will absorb & retain a lot of water. Such fibres will also absorb the liquids formed by decaying matter & micro fungi...…..  which all plants feed upon .


 I found to my dismay that some times putting fresh cut green grass cuttings on a veg bed as a mulch may end up giving you a lot of unwanted fungi & moulds around the plants & into the root systems .
 If there are any couch grass ( creeping grass ) bits in it you'll transfer them to the beds before they have died off.  So in effect so you end up having to re make your lawns and beds to get rid of the couch grass .
 
Leave the cuttings spread out on smooth concrete or tarmac to dry for a few days giving them a couple of turnings over to get oxygen to the yellowing stuff .

Once they change to a light olive greyish colour sweep them up then apply them as a mulch ..the green grass cuttings will now be useful moisture retaining fibres fairly free of the damaging fungi & moulds & viable couch grass bits .
Strong belief , triggers the mind to find the way ... Dyslexia just makes it that bit more amusing & interesting

 

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