Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Biodegradable mulches for tomato growing (#journal)

Biodegradable mulch instead of polyethylene for weed control of processing tomato production

Alicia Cirujeda, Joaquin Aibar, Álvaro Anzalone, Lluís Martín-Closas and Ramón Meco, et al.
Black plastic is widely used in Spanish tomato growing, proving effective at weed control but creating a serious waste problem. This study looked at various biodegradable mulching alternatives over a three year trial. Paper and biodegradable plastic proved as effective as traditional plastic in controlling weeds, but were more expensive. Barley straw was less effective. Hand-weeding without mulch also proved viable where weeds were few. Prohibition of black plastic is suggested as the way to change practice.

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