What plants do you use for green composting?

Norway_ralph(6)October 19, 2013

I have been green composting in the late winter/early spring for the last couple of years. I generally use broad beans (fava bans) , due to their frost tolerance and germination in soil down to 2 degrees C (35F), which allows me to turn them in before spring vegetables are ready to plant out.
I am thinking of trying a couple of other varieties for green composting (radishes, based on their fast growth rate and mustard greens for the high rate of leaf production ) and am interested to hear what other people recommend as green composting plants.

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
seysonn(8a WA/HZ 1)

I think, if you are in zone 6, probably it is too ate to grow any cover crop that can be tilled in as green manure.
Other than beans, most gardeners plant rye, annual grass, clover, fenugreek. But for spring growing it is another thing.

Another point is that you would want to grow things that their roots are nitrogen fixer or their foliage is rich in nitrogen. I don't think, for example, radish is one of those.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2013 at 6:35AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I use a lot of cover crops, and in late summer and fall I love mustard greens best. You can take a couple of cuttings for the freezer, then chop in whatever is left before the first hard freeze.

It's late to plant seeds, but I have a couple of flats of crimson clover plugs, started from seed in early Sept, that I'll use as bed-sitters through the winter. They will have to be covered with wire cages or the deer will eat them.

I have some oats holding seed now, and I'll let that stand and winterkill. In winter, I throw chunks of it to the chickens. My austrian winter peas are four inches tall -- as tall as they will get until spring. Favas are not winter hardy for me, so I use austrian winter peas instead. The tendrils are good eating, but I pull the plants and compost them just as they start blooming in late spring.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2013 at 9:04AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
albert_135(Sunset 2 or 3)

A few years ago harry vetch was all the rage. I don't recall reading about it recently.

    Bookmark   October 20, 2013 at 2:46PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Ralph I can't say if it is too late in your part of zone 6 or not but it isn't here in my part. We just planted a mix of turnips and radish in several beds middle of the past week. Normally they will do well into mid to late January and we till them in then weather permitting.

Two of the other garden beds get planted with various deer fodder crops - winter peas, clover, chicory.etc. and all work well for green manures.


    Bookmark   October 20, 2013 at 5:34PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Need advice on setup
I am in charge of a community garden at my place of...
Brandon Smith
What's up with these basil plants?
I planted these into my garden bed a week ago. I’ve...
Kim Kimura
what do I do with sprouting sweet potatoes?
It way to early to plant the sprouts.. need to be near...
Planting two seeds. Should I keep both?
I've always heard you should plant 2-3 seeds per container...
Artichoke Failure, HELP!!!
I am in zone 7a, middle TN, and attempting to grow...
Sponsored Products
Black Classic Finial Tiered Plant Stand
$32.99 | zulily
Hang Pot - White - Wallter
$125.00 | HORNE
Black Perching Birds Wall Trellis & Shelf
$19.99 | zulily
Safavieh Indoor/Outdoor Area Rug: Safavieh Rugs Bohemian Grey/Multi 2 ft. 6 in.
Home Depot
24" x 24" Red Cedar Planter
Glamos Wire Heavy Duty Stackable Support - 10 Pack - 701642
$187.54 | Hayneedle
Bamboo Tree Shoji Blinds 48 Inch, Width - 48 Inches
$39.00 | Bellacor
Jaipur Metro Kaitlan Area Rug - RUG110484
$62.00 | Hayneedle
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™