I was mapping out my allotment plan for this coming year and was working on the three year rotation method. Thought i would share this with you . I have 10 raised beds so move everything around from bed to bed clockwise.
I found this information on the RHS website here ……
Soil fertility: Different crops have different nutrient requirements. Changing crops annually reduces the chance of particular soil deficiencies developing as the balance of nutrients removed from the soil tends to even out over time.
Weed control: Some crops, like potatoes and squashes, with dense foliage or large leaves, suppress weeds, thus reducing maintenance and weed problems in following crops.
Pest and disease control: Soil pests and diseases tend to attack specific plant families over and over again. By rotating crops between sites the pests tend to decline in the period when their host plants are absent which helps reduce build-up of damaging populations of spores, eggs and pests. Common diseases that can be helped avoided by rotation include clubroot in brassicas and onion white rot.
How to do crop rotation
Divide your vegetable garden or allotment into sections of equal size (depending on how much of each crop you want to grow), plus an extra section for perennial crops, such as rhubarb and asparagus. Group your crops as below:
- Brassicas: Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, kohl-rabi, oriental greens, radish, swede and turnips
- Legumes: Peas, broad beans (French and runner beans suffer from fewer soil problems and can be grown wherever convenient)
- Onions: Onion, garlic, shallot, leek
- Potato family: Potato, tomato, (pepper and aubergine suffer from fewer problems and can be grown anywhere in the rotation)
- Roots: Beetroot, carrot, celeriac, celery, Florence fennel, parsley, parsnip and all other root crops, except swedes and turnips, which are brassicas
Move each section of the plot a step forward every year so that, for example, brassicas follow legumes, onions and roots, legumes, onions and roots follow potatoes and potatoes follow brassicas. Here is a traditional three year rotation plan where potatoes and brassicas are important crops:
Section one: Potatoes
Section two: Legumes, onions and roots
Section three: Brassicas
Section one: Legumes, onions and roots
Section two: Brassicas
Section three: Potatoes
Section one: Brassicas
Section two: Potatoes
Section three: Legumes, onions and roots