Note to readers, attached is the complete final report for FNE03-489.
On our farm in the years that we have been farming (since 1982) we have no experienced any serious insect or disease infestations. This remained constant though out the period of our grant. We feel this is a result of our organic practices, maintaining good soil tilth, cover crop rotations, proper ph, border establishment for ecology diversity of insects, birds and beneficial predators and just overall good stewardship practices.
We noticed no differences with the planting of our high density medicinal herb beds with regard to insect and disease problems. On the overall, the high density beds were strong and vigorous and suppressed weed growth was apparent. Time required for the high density planting (6 hours per bed) was not any greater than for conventional 36 inch or 20 inch row space planting. Time required for preparation of high density was less by half (2 hours as compared to 4 hours) because of the reduction in space required (600 row feet is required to plant 1200 plants 6 inchs on center). No wildlife damage was experienced because plantings were in close proximity to the house and barn and two resident dogs.
No organic fertilizer was applied except to the transplants in the greenhouse prior to plantings in the field. Fertilizer applied in the greenhouse was Neptune’s liquid analysis 2-3-1 fish and seaweed. It was applied for a six week period at a cost of $67 for the 5 gallons which was consumed during that period.
Organic germination-potting soil that was OMRI approved was used for seeding and transplanting. From the germination seed bed the seedlings were transplanted into 48 count seed flats. This required approximately 300 seed flats. The seedlings remained in these until they were transplanted in high density beds.