Green Manure ‘Landsberger Winter Mix’ is the ultimate in winter green manure. It is deep rooting and an excellent nitrogen fixer. With prolific growth it is an excellent ground cover. This highly esteemed mix is suitable for overwintering: sown throughout autumn, the crop is then dug into the soil the following spring to compost in place.
This combination of green manures is named after the German town of Landsberg. It is known as 'Landsberger Gemenge' which roughly translates as 'Landsberg Batch'.
It is used extensively as a winter catch and fodder crop, being sown after the main crop
to provide late autumn grazing. When it is ready, it looks like a tossed salad for livestock!
Sowing Period: August to November
Soil: Most soil types
Growing Period: 3 to 6 months
Coverage: 3kg per acre - 50gm covers 17 square metres
Crimson clover (Trifolium incarnatum)
A good ground cover that will help with weed suppression, it is quick and easy to grow. It can take a degree of frost but even if it does die back the winter roots are beneficial. Good nitrogen fixer. Suits most soils especially useful in sandy ones but does like it free draining.
English Early Common Vetch (Vicia sativa)
Also known as ‘Tare’ or simply ‘the vetch’ it produces a lot of bulky foliage that improves the soils fertility as it fixes nitrogen and helps add organic matter, improving the texture of the soil and suppressing weeds. Useful for heavy soil.
Italian Rye (Lolium multiflorum)
Rye is one of the best manures for winter use, as it gives good crop cover to help prevent nutrient leaching. It is a hardy annual and an excellent nitrogen lifter and it can lift and release up to 90% of nitrate to the next crop. Rye has deep penetrative roots that help to break up heavy soils and so improve soil structure.
When planted in the winter, it actually grows during any warmer days, when sunlight temporarily brings the plant to above freezing, even while there is still general snow cover. It is sometimes used in winter gardens and is a very common nurse crop.
Sowing: Sow in August through November
Prepare the soil by removing weeds, digging over if it hasn't been recently cultivated and raking level. Scatter seeds over the surface of the soil.
Make sure the seed is in firm contact with the soil by gently tapping over the surface with the back of a spade. Water in well.
Bare patches should be covered within two to three weeks and plants will do the most good if they are left for around eight weeks before digging in.
If plants start to flower before this, cut off the tops and dig in. Leave the green manure to decompose in the soil for up to four weeks before growing vegetables.
Don’t forget !
Rotate green manures as you would any other crop. For example - Rotate Vicia, and Alfalfa, with Peas/Beans, Mustard and Fodder Radish with Brassicas
There's something about growing cover crops makes a person feel like a farmer!
- Additional Information
Common Name Landsberger Gemenge Other Common Names Organic Green Manure