- improves soil structure – as a green manure
- suppresses soil disease and weeds – as a biofumigant
Caliente Mustard produces a naturally occurring biofumigant gas (isothiocyanate (ITC)) when its plant cells are damaged (by crushing or chopping).
This gas suppresses a range of:
- soil-borne diseases, including Verticillium wilt, Rhizoctonia spp., Pythium spp., Fusarium spp., and Sclerotinia spp.
- nematodes (eelworms)
To encourage the production of the biofumigant gas ITC:
- chop the Caliente Mustard plants as finely as possible – the finer the chop the greater the effect. Either, use a rotary mower, a strimmer or garden shredder
- incorporate the chopped mustard into soil immediately, simply digging in the whole crop, un-chopped, will not give the same effect. Mix the shredded vegetation into the top 15cm (6in) of the soil either with a rotovator, or by digging in with a fork
- seal the soil surface, at once, to keep the gases in, using polythene
- the soil temperature should be warm, between 10-15°C (50 – 59°F)
- autumn or late spring incorporations are the most effective
To grow Caliente mustard:
- Sow spring to late summer – it will be ready 60 to 90 days after sowing
- To cover areas of bare soil over winter, sow early October (no later than mid-October) & the crop will be ready for incorporation in early to mid spring
- 200g of seed covers approx 120sq.m
- 1kg covers approx 600sq.m
- Caliente mustard is available from Tozer Seeds
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