Growing Vegetables/Straw Over Seeds

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Question
Mr. Mascio,

I just planted my beans, corn and cucumber seeds this weekend and noticed that the solid dries out rather quickly over them.  Would it be advisable to  put an inch or two of straw over the planted seeds to keep the ground from drying out?  I'm afraid the soil is going to make a hard crust and make it difficult for the plants to break through

Thanks,
Chris.

Answer
Chris, mulching the soil with shredded leaves or straw is always advisable.  This keeps the soil both moist and cooler in the hot summer months.

Keep in mind that it is prudent to water very deeply a couple of times per week.  The soil should be moist two inches below the surface. Deep watering also promotes the roots to grow downward; whereas shallow watering results in the roots reaching for the surface. This produces a weaker plant and poor growth.

I hope this answers your question.  Please write again if I can ever provide assistance.

Regards,

Mike

Growing Vegetables

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Mike Mascio

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I have been an avid gardener since 1985 and an AllExpert volunteer since 1998. I specialize in soil preparation, seed starting and plant propagation, flowers, vegetables, and general landscaping. I am a strong advocate of the square foot method of gardening and the use of organic controls for pests and diseases.

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