vegetable patch management
crop rotation
crop rotation benefits and shortcomings
Crop rotation has plenty of benefits but there are also some shortcomings. This page looks at both the benefits and shortcomings of crop rotation to help you get the best out of the type of crop rotation you use.

Crop Rotation Benefits
  • Prevents the build-up of pests and pathogens that can occur when vegetables of a specific family group are grown continuously in the same area.
  • Enriches the soil with bacteria, fungi and protozoa.  Different varieties of which thrive depending on the type of vegetables that have been planted.
  • Reduces the depletion of trace elements.  Some vegetables draw disproportionate amounts of specific trace elements, if the same vegetables are continually grown in the same bed this can lead to a shortage of those elements they use.  
For these reasons your vegetable garden will be healthier and more productive if you practice crop rotation in some form.

crop rotation Shortcomings

  • Crop rotation plans assume that you use equal space to grow the different groups of vegetables but usually the spacing required is much more uneven.
  • People rarely have vegetable beds of equal size and shape.
  • Vegetable growing times to harvest vary enormously. For example rocket takes as little as six weeks to harvest time while the growing season for tomatoes is several months.
  • Some companion planting practices contradict crop rotation practices.  

These factors mean that you can tie yourself in knots trying to follow a crop rotation plan.  For this reason I prefer to use what I call the Key Crop Rotation Plan.  

PAGE CREATED  2016-08-17, Modified 2016-08-19