Sunday, July 27, 2014


As it turned out, there were two meals left in the pea patch. They are now in the freezer.  In fact, had I left the rows in I may have gotten two more as the cool summer is allowing them to keep producing.  But I had plans for that bed so out they came.

The plan is Solarization.  I have bacterial and fungal issues in almost every bed.  The only solution I know of for that, save replacing the soil, is solarization.  Soil solarization is a non-chemical method for controlling soilborne pests using high temperatures produced by capturing radiant energy from the sun.

In order to do this, you must put plastic over the area for 4 to 6 weeks during the hottest time if the year.  That time is fading fast.  UC Davis has a good article on soil solarization for gardens.  Link,  I have two greenhouse panels that will work just great.  I know they trap heat because the lid of the cold frame is made of them and it gets hot enough in there to melt plastic pots!

So I removed the peas, raked the soil, gave it a good soaking and covered it up.  I'll let that cook until we put the garden away in the fall and we'll see if it helps next year.  I have tweaked my garden rotation to get all the beds solarized for half a season within the next two years.


  1. This is fascinating...I've been wondering what to do with some of our raised beds that have nothing but weeds in them and I'm worried about the soil conditions I've also seen some mushrooms growing. I am thinking I could get some sheets of hard plastic. I tried, mostly unsuccessfully to use the weed block cloth, stretched across the beds and held down with bricks. I"m guessing with a strong wind, that won't last. Thanks for this! Off to do some research!

  2. Hmmmm....going to check out the UC Davis article.