One of the methods that certainly distinguishes an organic-biological approach from the traditional one is the use of expedients and compounds one hundred percent natural to fertilize the soil.
The cover crops, sometimes also called green manure, is certainly a highly proven method to rely on in order to fertilize the soil.
But let’s first of all understand what it is, what it entails and certainly when it is the best way to use this agricultural “expedient” in our vineyards.
What is green manure?
Green manure or cover crop is nothing more than a technique that is used to fertilize in a natural way. What does it consist of? Very simply, we plant different species of plants or flowers in order to create the right amount of nutrients to the soil. This technique allows us to enrich the soil with organic substances and is particularly useful in the case of vines.
The best time for sowing is definitely autumn. You will thus prepare your vineyard for the following spring.
What are the advantages of green manure?
Well certainly the advantages are countless. With the use of green manure we are going to improve the content of organic substances and of course of humus in our soil. We will create a sort of shielding, or protection of the soil and we will treat more water (this also indirectly helps not to have too much diluted juice in the grapes).
In addition, our green manure helps control weeds and brings microelements to the surface. We are therefore talking about chlorine, manganese and iron, for example.
One thing that is particularly important to us is certainly the enhancement of biodiversity. There is absolutely nothing better than the use of cover crops.
The main plants that are used are certainly the leguminous plants that provide nitrogen to the soil. Element, which promotes vegetative development.
Mainly used are: field beans, clover, lentils, beans and broad beans.
As for grasses, they are also very used in this technique and they are used as a sort of natural detox for the soil, in fact: grasses as-sorb nitrogen, they are therefore combined with leguminous plants in order to create a situation of total balance of components in the soil.
Last but not least, among the most used species we have cruciferous plants which absorb all the excess phosphorus in the soil. They also perform a sort of purifying function inside your vineyard.
It creates a situation of constant balance of nutrients needed within our vineyard and an increase in biodiversity, which automatically creates a better resilience of the vineyard ecosystem.
And of course it will bring greater ease in the production of quality grapes.