Buckwheat is a fast-growing short-term summer green manure that germinates in about 3-5 days. It produces a dense canopy of foliage that smothers & out-competes weeds and once dug into the top layer of soil (15-18cm) rapidly decomposes helping to improve the soils structure & organic matter content so it can retain more moisture.
Buckwheat does not fix nitrogen, but it will prevent it from leaching. Buckwheat is great at scavenging for phosphate in the soil, especially suitable for soils that suffer from phosphate lock-up.
If left to flower buckwheat produces pretty little pink flowers that are loved by bees & beneficial insects, but as with the majority of green manures, it is better to dig in whilst young & green rather than old & woodier as they decompose more rapidly (maybe leave just a few to flower). It is especially important to dig in before going it goes to seed as it germinates very easily & may produce lots of unwanted volunteers. It can be topped if done early. However, Buckwheat is an annual that is susceptible to frost so early spring or later autumn frosts will kill it. Keep an eye out for late frosts in May.
Buckwheat is thought to produce toxic substances that inhibit the growth of other seeds particularly effective against the germination of annual broad-leaved weeds. This is known as 'Allelopathy'. This can be a problem if small vegetable seeds are sown directly after buckwheat has been dug in, like carrots or parsnips so leave a month before sowing seeds. It doesn't cause any problems for small seedling transplants. Buckwheat can be sown anywhere in crop rotations.
Need Some Help On Green Manure?
Then we have 2 invaluable resources on our website that will provide the answers to all of your Green Manure questions:
1. A Beginners Guide that covers everything you ever wanted to know about Green Manure in 5 quick and simple steps - read it [HERE]
2. How To Choose Which Green Manure To Sow...a summary of all the Green Manures showing which soil types, plant families, and benefits that each Green Manure can bring to your veg patch or allotment - read it [HERE]
Buckwheat Green Manure Seed Information
|When to Sow:
||May, June, July, August.
Grows to a height of c.50cm
|Ideal Soil Type:
|How to Sow:
||Prepare the soil by roughly digging it over and removing any weeds. Lightly tread the soil, and then sow the seeds by broadcast sowing (i.e. scattering evenly) for good coverage. Rows can be sown but are not as good for weed suppression. Rake the soil and water well. In dry periods you may need to water until the green manure is established.
||The green manure should be cut down before flowering when the stems are nice and soft as they decompose quicker, retain more beneficial nutrients and are easier to incorporate into the soil. They can be dug into the soil by turning over into the top 15cms or left on the top as a mulch, the worms will drag down the organic matter and help to aerate the soil.
||12.5 grams per square metre.
|Pack Weight / Area:
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