The summer cottage season is coming to an end, the harvesting of the crop grown in this difficult year. This gives gardeners time to evaluate their successes and understand the reasons for their failures. Sometimes novice gardeners-gardeners do not even realize that these reasons lie literally under their feet. Soil is the source of human material well-being, the greatest gift of nature. It is a mixture of powdered rock emerging to the surface of the earth and decomposed plant and animal remains.
The main task of the gardener is to create optimal conditions for nutrition, water supply, the necessary air regime of the soil, as well as the best reaction of the soil solution for a given culture. The topsoil (15-25 cm) is the most important. It contains the bulk of the roots of all plants. Living organisms (microflora, worms, etc.) live here. Any soil has a number of characteristics, namely: fertility, acidity, texture, ripeness, thermal properties, etc.
Soil fertility - this is a combination of its properties, providing high yields of agricultural crops. This includes the ability of the soil to provide plants with a sufficient amount of water, nutrients, create an optimal temperature regime and a whole range of other conditions necessary for growth, development, flowering and fruit formation. For many crops, the ideal soil is that warms up early, is easy to cultivate, dries up quickly after watering or rain, but at the same time does not compact, does not harden and retains moisture in the root layer throughout the season. Such soil is quite homogeneous in structure, fine-lumpy (from 1 to 10 mm), granular.
Coarse-grained sandy and fine-grained clayey soils are infertile. In coarse-grained soils, rain or irrigation water disappears instantly, and a significant part of the nutrients available to plants leaves with it. Fine-grained, clayey soils are sticky, practically impermeable to water and air. In such conditions, plants suffer either from flooding (in damp years), or from drying out during a dry period and from a lack of air. Such soils can be improved by adding organic fertilizers or another type of soil. For example, clayey - improved by the inclusion of organic matter (compost, green fertilizers, manure, sawdust, moss, peat, etc.) and medium-grained sand; sandy - by adding clay, peat, compost.
Humus is an important indicator of soil fertility. Humus is a layer of soil that consists of rotted residues of all kinds of organic waste. It increases the soil's ability to absorb and retain water, enhances soil aeration and increases the biological activity of soil microorganisms, especially at soil temperatures from + 10 to + 18 ° C. Soil microorganisms recycle organic residues and soil minerals, making nutrients more available to the grown plants. Humus-rich soils like cucumbers, zucchini, celery, cabbage vegetables. Onions and garlic do not tolerate the high content of humus in the soil. In such soil, their root system rots.
Soil ripeness (readiness for processing)
The correct time to start tillage and prepare the beds can be determined with a simple method. To do this, you need to take a handful of the soil to be examined and gently squeeze it with your fingers (as when holding a ball). If the soil crumbles easily under pressure and disintegrates into fragments, this means that it is ready for almost all types of processing. If the soil remains sticky and does not crumble, then you need to wait with the processing.
The result of human labor depends on the state of the soil, and this, in turn, depends to a certain extent on the person who can either improve the soil or severely damage it.
Thermal properties of soil
The most important factor determining seed germination, emergence of seedlings, growth and development of crops is soil temperature. The methods for regulating the thermal regime of the soil are different for each climatic zone. In the northern regions, it is most often necessary to increase the soil temperature. However, in hot and dry summers, it becomes necessary to reduce it. Watering or irrigation lowers the temperature as a result of the expenditure of heat for heating and evaporation of water. Loosening increases the heating of the soil. Covering the soil surface with material of different colors (straw, peat, humus, ash) increases or decreases its heating. Smoke screens reduce heat radiation from the soil and protect plants from frost.
An important condition for the normal growth and development of plants is the reaction of the soil solution. It has a great influence on the mineral nutrition of plants, their growth and development, and productivity. Acidity is a soil property due to the content of hydrogen ions in the soil solution, as well as exchangeable hydrogen and aluminum ions in the soil absorbing complex. It is expressed by the conditional pH value: at pH-7, the reaction of the soil solution is neutral, at pH below 7 - acidic, above 7 - alkaline. Acidic soils include podzolic, boggy, gray forest, brown forest, yellow soils, red soils, etc.
High acidity negatively affects the growth and development of many crops and beneficial microorganisms. The availability of many nutrients for plants depends on the value of soil acidity, since with a neutral reaction, nutrients are in a more accessible form. Therefore, most plants develop well with a neutral or slightly acidic reaction of the soil solution. Although there are plants that adapt to an acidic or alkaline environment. It is very important for a gardener to know this indicator on his site.
There are several ways to measure soil acidity.
1. The simplest one is to use hints from nature itself.
- On acidic soils grow: horsetail, sorrel, plantain, creeping buttercup, Veronica oak, sedge, daisy, cornflower, Ivan da Marya, Veronica, mint.
- On slightly acidic and neutral plants grow: fragrant chamomile, coltsfoot, creeping wheatgrass, field bindweed, garden thistle, meadow clover and creeping clover, burdock, alfalfa.
- On alkaline soils: burnet, passerine millet.
2. You can use special acidity testers. These can be litmus tests, capsule testers with chemical reagents, or just a pH tester.
1. Soil sample. Remove about 50 mm of topsoil and loosen the soil to a depth of about 130 mm. Remove all stones and organic matter (leaves, twigs, etc.) as this may affect the test result. Gently pour in water (preferably rainwater), bringing the selected area to a state of mud.
2. Tester. Using the thinnest sanding paper, carefully remove any oxides from the top of the silver rod. ATTENTION! Don't damage the dark tip!
3. Testing. Lower the tester rod into damp ground to a depth of about 100 mm. Do not apply pressure under any circumstances! Make sure the damp earth completely covers the tester shaft on all sides. After a minute, the tester will show the result.
For a more objective result, you should dig out a sample of the earth, remove all organic matter from it. Prepare the soil by crushing it first. Pour 0.5 L of distilled or deionized water into a clean glass or plastic container and add soil in a 1: 1 ratio. Mix thoroughly and start testing the resulting suspension. The table included with the tester contains a list of plants with the required pH level for them.
It is possible to determine acidity without special equipment, but with the help of an indicator set for the approximate determination of the acidity of the soil. To do this, pits 20-25 cm deep are dug along the diagonal of the site at a distance of 10 m from each other. A thin layer of soil is cut off from one of the vertical walls of these pits to their entire depth. Each sample is thoroughly mixed separately, moistened with distilled or rain water. Then a handful of earth is taken from each sample and squeezed in the hand together with a strip of indicator paper. Redness of the indicator tape indicates that the soil is acidic, the tape will turn pink - medium acid, yellow - slightly acidic, greenish - close to neutral, blue - alkaline.
E. Holoptseva, L. Timeiko, Candidates of Biological Sciences
Soil and fertility
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Results achieved by liming soils
The main advantages of the process:
- The soil is enriched with microelements that improve plant development.
- Organic fertilizers begin to yield 30-40% more yield.
- The activity of some beneficial microorganisms increases.
- The structure and properties of the soil are improved (water resistance, for example).
- In cultivated plants, the level of toxic elements is significantly reduced.
It must be said that the results of liming are manifested progressively. In some cases, improvements take place only after a few years. Therefore, liming should not be done annually.
But, if ammonia preparations are used as fertilizers, liming should be carried out regularly. Re-liming depends on the addition of these fertilizers. In the case, for example, if the soil is regularly fertilized with manure, it is recommended not to re-liming.
Schemes for planting a tomato in a greenhouse
The question about the scheme for planting a tomato in a greenhouse can be answered as follows: for each variety of this crop there is its own version, for example, you can use such convenient and productive schemes:
- For early low-growing tomato varieties that lead to 2-3 stems, the best planting option is in a checkerboard pattern while maintaining the distance between tomatoes in a row of 40 cm, between tomato rows - 50 cm.
- For standard and determinant varieties that lead to 1 stem, the planting pattern should be different - 25 cm by 50 cm, that is, 1 sq. m of greenhouse area can accommodate up to 10 tomato bushes.
- For tall indeterminate tomato varieties, a scheme can be applied when plants in a polycarbonate greenhouse are planted in a checkerboard pattern in 2 rows. In this case, the aisles are left 80 cm, the distance between tomato plants is 50-60 cm when growing tomatoes in 1 stem and 70 cm when keeping tomato plants in 2 stems.
You can also use combined planting of low-growing early-ripening varieties and tall tomatoes. For example, in a standard greenhouse, in which there are 2 wide beds and a small passage between them, you can plant tomato seedlings in 2 rows. The walls of the greenhouse will have the first row, which will contain low early tomatoes. They need to be planted at a distance of approximately 40 cm and formed into only 1 stem. They are located at the walls in order to receive as much light as possible.
The aisle will have a second row in which tall tomatoes must be planted at a distance of 60 cm and also lead them into 1 stem. Between these rows, tomatoes of standard superdeterminant varieties should be planted at a distance of about 25 cm.If, with this form of planting, all plants are kept in 1 stem, in this case, it will be possible to get an ultra-early harvest, but there will be relatively few tomatoes. If they are formed into 2-3 stems, then there will be more tomatoes, but they will sing later. When using such a scheme in a greenhouse of 6x3 m, 35-40 early ripening, 30 determinant and 15 indeterminate tomatoes can be placed at the same time.
Do I need to bring "fertile land" to the site?
How to save time and money when developing a plot and building a house? Do I need to bring "fertile land" to the plot? Building a garden can be compared to building or renovating a house. Someone builds everything himself, someone hires "wild" brigades, someone turns to construction companies ... But in any case, we strive to use materials and technologies that will allow us to build a CONVENIENT and LONG-LASTING house.
A house that does NOT require constant maintenance costs and minor repairs. A house that will NOT collapse if, for example, we forget to throw snow from the roof ... But the garden is often created exactly the opposite way ... The soil, the foundation of the garden, is brought in from the outside, and of unknown origin ... And what kind of soil (soil) is needed, to serve as a solid foundation? It would never occur to you to make the foundation of a house like this: "Builders, carry as many cars as you want, put it down somehow, tomorrow we will build walls!"
The most interesting thing is that the best (most reliable and strong) "foundation" for a garden is the natural soil that ALREADY IS on the site. In nine cases out of ten, there is no need to import land! The tenth case is when there is NO soil. Not at all (when the house and the fence are floating in the air). ☺In fact, why and why is the soil brought in?
The main reason is simple - in the process of building a house, the soil that already existed is compacted and littered so much that it becomes "soil". If we are to bring something to the site, then first of all - “fresh organic matter”. It is she who reanimates soil fertility. To increase soil fertility, it is much more efficient to start five machines of old straw and five machines of sawdust! Instead of three cars "chernozem" - for the same money.
What soil is needed for growing cucumbers in a greenhouse: the best parameters, composition, methods for increasing fertility
The condition of the soil is one of the main conditions for the development and yield of cucumber. The culture enters fruiting early, therefore, by the time of planting, the soil should contain a complex of all mineral and nutrients necessary for fruit set. Otherwise, it is impossible to achieve a high yield.
Not only fertility is important, but also the structure of the soil. The weak root system of the cucumber does not tolerate heavy soils. It should be borne in mind: everything that is introduced into the soil stays in it for a long time, so the process requires the right approach.
The main requirements of the culture for the mechanical composition of the soil are high air permeability and moisture capacity, therefore, cucumbers are recommended to be planted on light and medium loams, which are distinguished by good aeration of the root system, evenly distribute and retain moisture.
For good development, the cucumber needs mineral and organic nutrition, which comes from the soil immediately after planting the plants, so the soil should be high in humus and an optimal ratio of macronutrients.
- Nitrogen. With its lack, the growth of the aboveground part, the development of roots, slows down.
- Potassium. Deficiency of the mineral weakens plants, reduces resistance to disease and cold.
- Phosphorus. With a shortage, plant growth and fruit formation slows down.
- Magnesium. Leaves turn yellow, become brittle, fall off. Plant growth and fruit development slows down.
The culture is demanding on the reaction of the soil solution and does not tolerate acidification. The optimum acidity level is pH 6.2-6.8.
Cucumbers love warm soil. Planting seedlings and planting seeds is possible only after warming up the soil to t 18 ° C. With a decrease in t to 14-15 ° C for 3-5 days, the roots of the cucumber cease to develop.
Cucumbers develop better if the soil is 2-3 ° C warmer than the air. Average daily t of air for a cucumber is 16-32 ° C. These indicators are also used for ground control.
Soil moisture should be 75-85%. In the future, to control the moisture content of the soil, a handful of earth is taken from the root layer and squeezed tightly in a fist. If water comes out, the humidity level is over 80%. If the lump retains fingerprints, the humidity is over 70%. The lump crumbles - less than 60%.
Before proceeding with the basic preparation of the soil for cucumbers, you need to put in order its mechanical composition and physical properties. To create an optimal basis, into which fertilizers will be subsequently applied to the requirements of cucumbers. The task is especially relevant when developing a new site.
To determine the type of soil, you can use a simple method that does not require special equipment. To do this, you need to take a handful of earth and slightly moisten it with water so that it does not wring out. Crush and form a lump. After that, roll a lace with a diameter of 3 mm in your palms and roll it into a solid ring.
Depending on the condition of the cord, you can determine the type of soil:
- quickly disintegrates - sandy loam
- crushed during rolling - light loam
- solid, but disintegrates when rolled into a ring - medium loam
- solid, but small cracks form on the ring - heavy loam
- solid, solid ring - alumina.
The most optimal soil types for growing cucumbers. The mechanical composition of light loams does not need to be structured. In the middle loams, in the fall, manure is introduced at 5-6 kg per 1 sq. m.
This type of soil warms up quickly, is characterized by intense aeration and high water permeability. In addition, sandy loams are easy to process, and the transformation of organic matter into humus occurs in an accelerated mode.
The disadvantages of the soil for growing cucumbers are rapid cooling at night and the leaching of minerals from the root layer. This can be corrected by introducing fresh manure or compost from autumn, 10 kg per 1 sq. m.
These soil types are not suitable for growing cucumbers. They do not warm up well and practically do not allow air and moisture to pass through. This is culturally destructive.
The best option is to apply fresh straw manure. This should be done in the fall, so that it has time to decompose and turn into humus. In uncultivated soils, 10-15 kg of manure are applied per square meter. m. When re-applying (recommended every 3-4 years), 5-6 kg per square meter is enough. m.
The manure is covered superficially. When deeply embedded, it does not decompose and partially turns into peat, in which bacteria necessary for plants do not develop.
This type of soil is not suitable for growing cucumbers. It does not retain moisture, and minerals are quickly washed out from the root layer. Heats up quickly, but also cools down during the night temperature drop.
To improve the soil by 1 sq. m. make:
- semi-rotten manure or compost 1.5-2 buckets
- peat 1 bucket.
A laborious, costly, but very effective method is soil claying. To do this, in each square. m. add 1-2 buckets of powdered clay. It is combined with manure or compost. After adding any baking powder, the site is dug up. Activities are carried out for 2-3 years.
In Russia, this type of soil is found in the West Siberian Plain and in its natural form is unsuitable for growing cucumbers. It is excessively moistened and fibrous, there are no conditions for decomposition of plant residues, so the peat sour strongly. The peat-boggy soil is characterized by a light brown color.
First you need to dry the area. To do this, in the spring, grooves are dug along the perimeter of the site so that the water is diverted outside the garden. By the end of summer, the site will be drained, you can begin to improve the soil.
- powdered clay 1 bucket
- river sand 0.5 buckets
- lime from 0.3 to 1.4 kg, depending on the acidity.
The site is dug to a depth of 20 cm. Rotted manure, humus or bird droppings are introduced 1 kg per square meter. m. More organic matter is not required.
There are many organic substances in peat, and manure in this case is used only to start the processes of its decomposition.
Work on the introduction of these components is carried out constantly from year to year. Until the soil acquires optimal physical properties that are comfortable for plants. In addition to basic fertilizers (nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium), copper and boron are added annually.
Sour soil is typical for low-lying areas with stagnant spring water. Acidity can also increase after seasons of high rainfall, which washes away calcium and magnesium. Hydrogen ions begin to predominate in soil particles, increasing its acidity.
In such areas, plantain, wild rosemary, horsetail, veronica and sorrel grow rapidly. When digging up the soil at a depth of 10-15 cm, you can find a layer of light color, reminiscent of ash.
To determine the acidity of the soil, mix a semi-liquid solution from soil and distilled water, immerse a strip of litmus paper in it for 2-3 seconds. To calculate the acidity values, it is compared with the supplied color scale.
Calcium carbonate is used to reduce the acidity of the soil. It is found in ground limestone, chalk, cement dust, wood ash, dolomite and bone meal.
For the primary regulation of acidity, it is better to use ground limestone. The rate of its introduction per 1 sq. m. for different types of soil (pH How to prepare the soil for planting under cucumbers
The preparation of the soil and the arrangement of the beds for the greenhouse and open ground are the same. The only difference is in the preparatory work.
Most gardeners do not have the opportunity to observe crop rotation in the greenhouse, therefore, after harvesting, the depleted soil with manure rotted over the summer is completely removed from the premises and distributed in the place of future beds. An exception is the planting sites for pumpkin crops.
If for some reason a complete replacement of the soil is impossible, it must be disinfected.
- Spilling the soil with boiling water and covering the surface of the bed with a film for a day. After that, the earth is dug up and harrowed. The procedure is repeated after 3 days. Held in the spring.
- Application of biofungicides. Spraying on the soil solutions of drugs: Trichodermina, Fitosporin M, Phytocide, Bordeaux mixture, Pentafoga. They are processed in autumn and spring.
- Adding bleach 200 g per 1 sq. m. and digging up the soil. Apply 6 months before planting cucumbers.
- Spilling the soil with 2% formalin solution (40%), cover the surface with a film for 3 days. The soil is dug up and harrowed. The event takes place 2-4 weeks before planting.
From autumn all plant residues are collected and burned. The inner surfaces of the greenhouse are washed with 2% formalin solution (40%). It is advisable to fumigate the greenhouse with sulfur.
In the open field, you need to constantly change the place for growing cucumbers, returning the culture back only after 3-4 years. The best predecessors are tomatoes, cabbage, peas. Do not plant after pumpkin crops.
A place for a garden bed is selected well-lit, protected from drafts and cold northerly winds. In the fall, the site is dug up, removing all plant waste.
In the greenhouse and in the open field, when there is no soil replacement, green manure plants can be sown. The best option is white mustard. It must be sown immediately after harvesting the cucumber plants. After 3-4 weeks, a sufficient vegetative mass is formed, which is embedded in the soil to the depth of a shovel bayonet.
Mustard will destroy and remove from the soil most of the root secretions of cucumbers that have accumulated over the season.
In addition, a kind of compost is obtained in the soil, rich in proteins and minerals. A system of root canals is created in the soil, which improves its mechanical properties.
Dead roots of mustard attract worms and microbes, which form nitrogen in the process of their vital activity. Additionally, the soil is protected from erosion and swelling.
In the video, the author shows his method of preparing the soil and beds for sowing cucumbers.
Cucumber is one of the few plants that can and even be grown on fresh manure. When laying manure, it must be borne in mind that the root layer of plants reaches a depth of 20 cm. Therefore, on the surface of the manure there should be a 25-30 cm layer of fertile soil.
In such a bed of a thermophilic culture, cooling of the roots with a strong decrease in air temperature at night or insufficient heating of the soil with early planting in greenhouses is not terrible.
To equip the beds in the selected area, mark its boundaries. The width should be such that the gardener can freely reach the plants with both hands. It is impossible to lean even on the boards spread on top of the beds. The cucumber does not tolerate the slightest soil compaction.
A trench 50-60 cm deep is dug over the area of the garden bed. In the spring, two weeks before planting, it is filled with fresh manure. Top covered with garden soil and fertilized.
Fertilizers for cucumbers begin to be applied two weeks before transplanting seedlings or planting seeds.
For 1 sq. m. of the cucumber ridge are introduced:
- rotted manure 25 kg or compost 10 kg
- superphosphate 40 g
- potassium sulfate 40 g
- magnesium sulfate 15 g or potassium magnesium 60 g.
Fertilizers are evenly scattered on the soil surface, the ridge is dug up. After that, water is spilled at a rate of 10 liters per 1 sq. m.
After a week, add 30 g of ammonium nitrate per 1 sq. m. The bed is re-dug up and spilled with water. After that, we can assume that the soil is completely ready for planting cucumbers.
The strength of the seedlings depends to a large extent on the quality of the soil. The simplest option is to purchase ready-made soil adapted to the requirements of pumpkin crops.
Ready-made soils consist of a mixture of different types of peat, sod land, river sand, vermicompost with the addition of all the necessary minerals. They are completely processed and disinfected, they do not contain weed seeds, pest larvae and fungal spores.
- "Living earth" soil No. 2
- "Peter Peat" cucumber primer
- "Biud-soil" No. 2
For growing seedlings, you should not purchase peat soils. They are poorer in composition, suitable only for filling planting containers or adding already mature plants to the trunk circle.
In order to independently prepare the soil mixture, it is necessary to prepare and store the components even in the summer season.
Several soil options:
- humus, low-lying peat 1: 1
- sod land, decomposed peat, dung humus, river sand 3: 3: 3: 1
- low-lying peat, humus, rotted sawdust 3: 1: 1
- garden soil, manure humus, peat, rotted sawdust 2: 1: 1: 1.
For 10 liters - a bucket - any of these mixtures add 4 tbsp. l. wood ash, 20 g of superphosphate, 1 tsp each. urea and potassium sulfate.
Home soil mixture must be disinfected. To do this, it is spilled with 1% potassium permanganate solution or treated with biological fungicides. Recommended drugs: Fitosporin, Trichodermin, Planriz, Extrasol.
The limited space of boxes, barrels or other containers requires a slightly different approach to the composition and preparation of the soil.
When using barrels and other tall containers:
- a layer of pebbles, broken brick, strong branches on 1/3 of the container is laid on the bottom
- put hay, sawdust and tops on top, sprinkle with humus or rotted manure - after laying this layer, 40 cm remains to the edge of the container
- spilled with EM preparations for better overheating
- mix leaf earth and humus (1: 1) or peat and humus (1: 1)
- fall asleep with a 20 cm layer.
The container is covered with foil and left to refill for two weeks. Fertile soil is poured so that 15 cm remains to the edges of the sides of the container. Two weeks before planting, the soil is fertilized for cucumbers.
On balconies and window sills, cucumbers are grown in containers with a volume of at least 5-7 liters (depending on the variety). At the bottom of the pots, there must be holes for water drainage and a drainage layer 5 cm high.A layer of fertile soil at least 20 cm.
Cultivated plants, including cucumbers, remove almost all nutrients from the soil during the season. She is depleted. Salinity, increased acidity and severe drought drastically reduce the level of soil bacteria, and hence the formation of humus, so the soil must be monitored constantly, not limited to seasonal fertilization.
The soil for cucumbers must be fertile, then the high survival rate of seeds and an excellent harvest will delight you. These rules must be followed both when growing bushes on the street and in a greenhouse. To ensure the most comfortable conditions for growing plants, it is necessary to prepare the soil in advance. Cucumbers grow well in loamy or sandy loam soil.
It is not recommended to plant cucumbers in acidic or heavy soils. The best option would be to plant plants on neutral or, in extreme cases, weakly acidic soils. First of all, it is necessary to determine the level of acidity of the earth, after which preparatory work can be continued.
The acidity of the earth determines the pH level. The soil for cucumbers, subject to a neutral reaction, should have a pH of 7. The lower the pH, the more acidic the soil, which may not be suitable for planting. Too high pH values indicate alkaline soil, which is also not suitable for planting shrubs.
Soil acidity research can be done in three ways:
- using the Alamovsky device (in the laboratory or privately)
- thanks to litmus paper
- watching the germination of weeds.
Such studies can be carried out in a special laboratory or with the help of certain equipment that can be purchased. To perform an analysis of soil acidity, an Alamovsky device is needed. This device is easy to learn, as it comes with instructions that are understandable to any gardener.
You can evaluate the acidity of the earth by other methods. This requires litmus paper, which can be purchased at any store that sells chemicals. To conduct the study, it is necessary to make a cut of the earth to a depth of 30 cm in the vertical direction. The soil should be moistened with distilled water or rainwater, and part of the earth should be squeezed in the hand along with a piece of litmus paper. The color of the litmus paper is equal to the normal control scale, and the color matches determine the degree of acidity of the earth's surface.
When there is no Alamovsky device and it is not possible to get litmus paper, then it is possible to make an approximate assessment of acidity by observing harmful crops that grow in a greenhouse or on a garden bed where cucumbers will grow. The optimal indicators of acidic soils are plants in the form of plantain, horsetail, Veronica oak, pikulnik, sedge, horse sorrel, mint, creeping buttercup, woodlice, willow herb, and heather. If these plants are observed, the acidity of the soil must be reduced before the cucumbers are planted.
A good sign is the presence of creeping wheatgrass, field bindweed, coltsfoot, garden thistle, odorless chamomile and clover. These plants grow in low acid soils, which indicates that the soil is ideal for all the requirements of cucumbers.
It is best to start preparing cucumber beds in the fall. The soil is saturated with minerals due to the introduction of various types of fertilizers. If the acidity of the soil is low, then the best solution would be to use alkaline organic fertilizers of a liquid consistency. For acidic soils, liming must be performed, which is carried out by fertilizing the earth with lime, dolomite flour, cement dust, chalk, defect, and also ash.
When warm spring days come, you need to dig up the surface of the soil, while the depth of digging should be at least 25 cm. After digging, the top layer of earth (approximately 12 cm) must be mixed well with humus. Any organic matter is suitable for the preparation of humus. When the digging and fertilization of the soil comes to an end, the bed must be watered abundantly, after which the site is covered with a film for 2-3 days (this manipulation is needed to warm the earth to a temperature of at least 150 ° C).
When soil preparation cannot be completed in the autumn period, it is necessary to carry out spring preparatory work, which is slightly different from the autumn. In this case, it is better not to enrich the soil with lime fertilizers. It is better to focus on alkaline organic fertilizers of liquid consistency and on the maximally increased coefficient of soil fertilization with humus. It is important to have time to complete these procedures at least 7 days before sowing seeds or planting cucumber seedlings.
It does not matter whether it is necessary to sow seeds or plant seedlings, the main thing is to do it in conditions that completely exclude the possibility of frost resumption.
The maximum yield of cucumbers can be obtained by planting plants in elevated beds.
Such planting guarantees:
- optimal heating of the root system of this culture, which is very fond of heat
- protection against exposure of the plant to excessive soil moisture levels
- ideal illumination of each bush
- high level of plant productivity.
The beds must be formed and ready for planting at least 7 days before planting begins. Everything is explained by the fact that the land for planting cucumbers should settle a little.
When arranging the territory for planting plants, it is recommended to make several beds, the height of each of which is 20-30 cm. The height of the beds is explained by the type of soil: the heavier the soil, the higher the bed is needed for cucumbers. The width of the beds is formed by paths, the distance between which must be at least 50 cm.
If the cucumbers will be grown according to the method of vertical plant growth, it is necessary to install and stretch a special frame, which can be made from a mesh. The plant will trail along the surface of the net, which will create comfortable conditions for growing cucumbers and caring for them. The grid must be placed so that it does not obstruct them, being in different beds.
Cucumber is a demanding crop for moisture and soil fertility. To get a good harvest, you need a properly prepared soil for planting. The culture is distinguished by accelerated fruiting, therefore, already at the stage of preparing the soil for planting seeds or seedlings, it is required to provide it with a complex of mineral and nutrients. It is important not only to enrich the soil with nutrients, but also to saturate it with oxygen.
From the article you will learn how to prepare the soil for cucumbers in a greenhouse and get an excellent harvest.
Cucumber is an annual herb that belongs to the pumpkin family. As with all species of this family, the cucumber has a weak root system that cannot tolerate heavy soils.
The ability of the soil to separate into particles is called structure, and many particles of various sizes, shapes and qualitative composition are called soil structure.
The main types of soils:
- Clay. They are also called heavy, they are difficult to process. Contains more than 50% of the total clay.
- Loamy. The composition includes from 30 to 50% clay. Loams are heavy and light, it depends on the percentage of sand particles.
- Sandy loam. Contains 10-30% clay and 90-70% sand
- Sandy. The soil contains up to 90% sand and 10% clay.
In sandy and sandy loam soils, mechanical elements are usually in a separate-partial state. Loamy and clayey soils can be structural, unstructured, or low-structured.
To find out what type of soil prevails on your site, you need to determine the texture. Mechanical composition is the amount of solids contained in the soil.
You will need water to determine your soil type. Take a handful of earth and moisten it to a doughy mass. Then roll the cord 5 mm thick and fold into a ring.
The mechanical composition of the soil is assessed by how the cord behaves:
- if the soil is sandy, then you will not be able to twist the cord
- sandy loam soil will curl, but immediately fall apart
- if the ring forms, but easily disintegrates, then the soil is light loamy
- cracks will form on heavy loam when twisting
- if the soil is clay, then the ring will be free of cracks and keeps its shape well.
Loose soil with a water-holding capacity is suitable for planting a cucumber, so sandy and clay soils are not suitable.
To obtain the maximum yield, the soil in the greenhouse must meet the requirements:
- be breathable
- provide heat exchange
- saturate with water when watering
- absorb all minerals when feeding
- free from infections and harmful substances.
Humus is an important component of the soil. Humus is rotten manure and is used as biofuel.
Important! To make a soil for cucumbers, it is necessary that all components are in equal proportions, except for sand. It should be the least.
To prepare humus, manure is stacked, covered with peat and regularly watered with slurry. Thus, the manure is saturated with oxygen and useful compounds.
Humus performs important functions:
- saturates the soil with minerals
- makes the soil looser
- together with humus, beneficial microorganisms enter the soil.
An important component for the soil is turf. It is added to the composition to enrich the soil with nutrients and increase the soil's ability to absorb moisture.
Attention! Sod for greenhouses is harvested in fields and meadows, preferably near marshy areas. But if horsetail grows nearby, then you should not take the soil - the soil will be too acidic.
Sod harvesting takes place in two stages: the top layer of the earth with the entire root system is removed, then transported to the site and mixed with manure.
Requirements for peat indicators:
- it is not recommended to use too dry peat, it spills poorly
- its moisture content should not exceed 65%
- the acidity of the soil should be 6.5.
The use of sand in the soil increases the porosity and makes the soil looser, enriches the root system of the plant with moisture and air.
Once all the components are prepared, they are mixed and placed in the greenhouse.
The soil contains organic and inorganic components in certain proportions - usually 3-4 positions.
To prepare soil for cucumbers, you must:
To prepare the soil for growing cucumbers, follow the technology:
- Clean the greenhouse before the season starts. Remove all plant residues and debris.
- Dig up the ground 25-30 days before planting the cucumbers.
- Prepare biomass.
- Prepare your beds.
- Plant cucumbers.
- Drizzle with warm water.
Two weeks before sowing or transplanting cucumber seedlings, they begin to apply fertilizers.
For 1 m2 of the garden, make:
- compost 10 kg
- superphosphate 40 g
- potassium sulfate 40 g
- magnesium sulfate 15 g.
Fertilizers are applied for digging, after the ridge is spilled abundantly. A week later, add ammonium nitrate in the amount of 30 g. The ridge is loosened and watered again. The soil is now ready for growing cucumbers.
To grow a cucumber in a greenhouse, medium-level beds are most often made. In this case, a wide-row and tape method is used.
For the wide-row method, the distance between the rows is 0.8 m. With the belt method, the gap is formed by 0.4 m. Such cucumber beds will help to grow an excellent harvest.
Soil disinfection is carried out in cases where nothing has been grown in the greenhouse for a long time or, on the contrary, the same crop has been planted for several years in a row.
Methods for neutralizing soil in a greenhouse:
- The easiest way is to treat the soil with steam. For this, the soil is poured with boiling water and covered with foil. When exposed to high temperatures, harmful microorganisms die.
- The use of copper sulfate. The solution will require 10 liters of water and 1 tbsp. l. copper sulfate. The solution is used to treat the beds in the fall, after harvesting.
- Sulfuric checker. Set fire to the checker and leave it inside for an hour. Then the greenhouse is ventilated for some time.
- Bleach is a versatile pest control. It should be scattered over the beds.
- The use of biological products "Trichodermin" and "Fitosporin" will allow you to destroy pathogens and enrich the soil with beneficial microorganisms.
But it is not enough to neutralize only one soil, the entire greenhouse should be disinfected completely. To do this, you must first thoroughly wash the entire structure, and then wipe the windows and doors with a solution of potassium permanganate.
Replacement of soil is required if:
- the greenhouse has been used for many years without changing the soil cover
- in the previous season, the plants were sick, there was a poor harvest
- despite fertilization, the plants did not develop well
- an unpleasant odor emanates from the ground.
In these cases, you should:
- Remove plant residues.
- Remove the old soil by 30 cm around the perimeter of the entire greenhouse.
- Treat the soil with copper sulfate or bleach.
- Lay fresh, prepared soil.
- Apply fertilizer.
- To maintain a healthy soil, it is recommended to grow green manure.
Naturally, the soil in the greenhouse warms up only by June, depending on the region. In order to plant cucumbers in early spring, the greenhouse should be heated artificially.
There are three options for artificial heating of the greenhouse:
- using electrical appliances
- water heating
- due to warm beds.
Electrical appliances - heaters, special electrical plates, electrical cables. The advantage of this heating method is that it is possible to regulate the power supply of heat and the ability to heat the greenhouse even in winter. But there are two drawbacks: the high cost of equipment and installation.
Water heating is used with the use of special pipes made of polymer material, which are laid under the ground. Heating takes place due to hot water that flows through the pipes.
Warm beds. This heating method is the most economical. The soil is heated by natural biofuel placed in the lower layer of the ridge. The remains of plants, cardboard, manure, sawdust are taken as a filler. Heat is released during the decay process and is capable of heating the soil for two months.
General requirements for the soil for growing cucumbers:
- the soil should be loose, saturated with oxygen
- contain a large amount of organic and mineral matter
- have an acidity level of 6.2-6.5
- the soil must be free from infections and harmful microorganisms.
Proper soil care is as follows:
- in order for the soil not to dry out, regular watering is required
- the introduction of mineral fertilizers contributes to the enrichment of the soil with nutrients
- creating a favorable microclimate inside the greenhouse to avoid excessive soil moisture
- regular ventilation of the greenhouse to prevent fungal diseases.
The use of properly prepared soil, timely application of fertilizers, compliance with all the rules for disinfecting the greenhouse are the key to obtaining high-quality soil for growing cucumbers. Only by using all the tips in the complex, you can grow strong, healthy plants and get an excellent harvest of cucumbers.
Which plants love acidic soil and why?
Lovers of medium and strongly acidic soils include acidophilic plants. The area of their natural growth is wetlands, peat bogs, coniferous forests.
Over the years of evolution, the root system of plants has adapted to assimilate nutrients from an aggressive soil environment. A distinctive feature of acidophytes is the absence of suction root hairs. They are replaced by microscopic fungi that invade the root tissue and act as a supplier of moisture and trace elements. This symbiosis in botany is called mycorrhiza - mushroom + rhizome (rhizome). They cannot live and develop normally without each other, and the condition for the existence of mycelium is an acidic environment.
Garden ornamental acidophytes
The group of ornamental plants that need acidification of the soil is quite extensive:
- shrubs - heathers, azaleas, rhododendrons, wild rosemary
- conifers - spruce, pine, juniper, fir
- berry crops - cranberries, blueberries, blueberries, lingonberries
- perennials - primroses, gravilat, dicentra, ferns.
Many indoor plants come to us from tropical and subtropical regions. Heat and high humidity levels provoke rapid decomposition of organic matter and predominantly acidic soil environment. This determines which flowers like acidic soil, including indoor crops. Among those who prefer pH in the range of 4.5–5 units are azaleas, camellias, fuchsia, monstera, cyclamen. They love the acidic soil of Saintpaulia (violets), representatives of the numerous myrtle family.
The substrate for indoor plants of this group is prepared on the basis of peat, vegetable compost obtained from rotted coniferous and leaf (preferably oak) litter. Sphagnum moss is added as an acidifier.
Note! High moor peat is suitable for acidification. Its distinctive feature is brown. Low-lying peat has a higher degree of humification, it is much darker.