Garden Beds, Landscaping, Sod, & Dead Soil
Early in the season or at the end of the season, Alfalfa’s Secret can be added and mixed into the soil throughout the root zone as a soil amendment. Depending on the fertility level of the soil being prepared, one to three inches can be mixed in the top 1-6 inches of garden soil. When preparing a new site for a garden, the higher end levels should be used. Once the desirable soil fertility levels have been attained, fewer products will be needed to sustain a successful garden.
It can be applied topically on the ground under and between the growing plants. This should be done after the soil temperature reaches 60 degrees F. (generally about the first part of June in Minnesota). It is advisable to till any newly growing weeds before applying. Alfalfa’s Secret is best applied in thin layers of 1/2 inch to an inch per application. Apply these layers no more than once a month, making no more than 3 layers per growing season. An application of about 1 inch of Alfalfa’s Secret should result in a reduction in weed pressure. Gently working up the existing layer before applying the next layer allows the new layer to make contact with the natural soil microbes. Keep all seasonal mulches 2″ to 3″ away from the stems of garden plants. At the end of the growing season the original application and some extra application should be tilled into the soil for the benefit of the following growing season.
Continued use of Alfalfa’s Secret topically or incorporated will build up the soil’s organic matter. In sandy soils, this will help to hold moisture in the root zone of your garden. In hard clay soils, it will reduce the run-off of rain water and allow rain water to properly soak into the root zone.
Alfalfa’s Secret can be applied to newly landscaped soils prior to the laying down of cultured sod. Newly landscaped soils are considered to be dead soil. The nutrients in Alfalfa’s Secret will encourage the revitalization of these dead soils and feed the micro-organisms that will bring new life back to the soil that makes up the root zone for the new healthy grass.
Alfalfa’s Secret is rich in natural sugars. When surface applied to a rose garden, these sugars will breakdown and release an alcohol called triacotanol. This has been found to be of significant benefit to the development of beautiful roses and encourages the rose plant to express themselves more. Learn more about Alfalfa & Roses – A Love Story
Applying about an inch of Alfalfa’s Secret just larger than the expected dripline creates a natural matted area serving many benefits to the tomato plant.
The barrier will reduce the chance of the soil borne disease, like ‘blithe,’ from splashing up on the tomato plant during rain events or watering.
As the season progresses, the Alfalfa’s Secret will bleach to a natural light tan color. This will moderate the soil temperature and protect the soil from getting too hot from the summer sun. Dark black tilled soils will absorb too much sun and heat up to a level that can cook the fine roots of the tomato plant.
The Alfalfa’s Secret mat will also conserve moisture by reducing the amount of water evaporating off into the environment and will draw deeper soil moisture to the surface to feed the small tomato roots.
The mat created will also reduce the weed pressure during the growing season.
House plants and container gardens will thrive with Alfalfa Secret’s Alfalfa tea.
24″ X 24″ cheese cloth
One gallon glass jar
Lay out the cheese cloth add three cups of Alfalfa’s Secret to the center of cloth, pull up corners of the cloth and tie to make a sealed ball of Alfalfa’s Secret. Place ball in the jar and fill the jar with boiling water. When the water cools cover the jar with the lid and place the jar in a sunny spot for three days. Remove bag and use tea when plants need water. Mixture keeps for a week.
If large quantities are needed use a clean 5 gallon bucket and 5 bags of Alfalfa’s Secret.
Alfalfa’s Secret can be mixed with your composting material. The extra Nitrogen will speed up the composting process and results in a more nutritious material for your growing plants later. It will be especially beneficial when composting tree leaves in the fall of the year. To use Alfalfa’s Secret for fast fall leaf composting: Layer 6″ to 8″ of leaves with 2″ to 3″ of Alfalfa’s Secret; repeat these layers until fall leaves have been used up. Add a little water to the compost pile keeping it moist but not soggy wet. Turn pile weekly for best composting results.
Perennials, Trees, & Shrubs
For new perennials, trees, and shrubs: Dig the hole and remove the perennial from the pot. Fill the empty pot with Alfalfa’s Secret and pour it onto the excavated soil. Mix Alfalfa’s Secret and excavated soil, use this mixture to plant the new perennial, tree, or shrub. This technique can be used with any addition to the landscape.
To suppress weeds around fruit trees, first remove any perennial weeds around the trees up to 6′ from the trunk and add a layer of Alfalfa’s Secret. Keep a thin layer around the base of the tree and increase the thinness as you move away from the tree. At about a foot away from the trunk the layer can be about 3″ thick.
|Add a thin layer of Alfalfa’s Secret to the raspberry patch to suppress weeds and retain moisture.
Potted Plants, Raised Beds, & Container Gardening
Alfalfa’s Secret can be mixed with soils that are going to be used to backfill the planting of potted plants. The amount of mix will depend on the quality of the soil fertility that is being used as a backfill soil. A common starting point would be to mix three parts of backfill soil to one part Alfalfa’s Secret.
Container gardens work well with a mixture of three parts potting soil with one part Alfalfa’s Secret. Some dedicated container gardeners will then place a layer of Alfalfa’s Secret on the surface after the plants are up and growing.
For container gardening add 10% Alfalfa’s Secret to any potting soil. This rich mixture will help retain moisture and provide a slow release natural fertilizer that will boost growth and increase flower production.