Author Topic: Questions on plastic mulch  (Read 1132 times)

Offline allisb48

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Questions on plastic mulch
« on: April 04, 2016, 04:00:52 PM »
Got a mulch layer and will be ready to machine lay the plastic this year over hand laying done in the past. I'm not at this point laying much but enough to justify some equipment for doing it. So here's my question. What are any of you that lay plastic mulch down doing for clearing the areas between the rows of mulch? The last two years the weeds were kept at bay with the plastic and I grew a better than average yield off the rows but the weeds kept coming. I have a tractor one row cultivator that mounts to the tractor but it's for things like beans and corn. It would't reach out to the edge of the plastic. I'm thinking a long toolbar with some sweeps on the ends that work the dirt in the walkways. I've got a cat 1 three point tractor if that helps. Any thoughts? Any places that make this now that I don't have to reinvent the wheel so to speak?

Offline ONGardener

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Re: Questions on plastic mulch
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2016, 08:29:31 PM »
I grow with plastic, and don't have much issue in between the rows. This year I am thinking about using Straw to keep the weeds down, but if I have another dry season the weeds won't bother me much.
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Offline Daniel Grant

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Re: Questions on plastic mulch
« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2016, 08:32:33 PM »
Have you thought of using a propane flamer? Dan
Kubota 7100, L210, Allis G, TroyBilt, Horse, Gravely, Dr. Bush mower, Tuff Bilt tractor

Offline davidjrtx

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Re: Questions on plastic mulch
« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2016, 11:20:22 PM »
I leave enough room to run the tiller between rows usually. I have a couple places that are to narrow so I just mow it with riding mower

Offline AllisCA

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Re: Questions on plastic mulch
« Reply #4 on: April 05, 2016, 06:34:49 PM »
Weeds between plastic mulch rows can be a huge problem. Also grass can grow very fast too and the problem is if it gets wet for a period of time. Last yr when it rained for 30days straight everybody in my area got into big trouble. It only takes 2 weeks in tilled ground to have a mature looking grass stand up here. Straw isn't an answer because the wind will just blow it and then you'll have a mess in your crops. I purchased a David Bradley Walkbehind tractor I hope to try and make use of dragging a small harrow or tillage tool behind. And then anything you do may damage the plastic a little.
So for certain crops this year I want to try planting a cover crop, terminating it and planting through the residues. That will do something good for the soil and reduce my plastic mulch usage. If you plant a cover between the rows try something low growing that won't itself get out of hand.
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