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Monday, March 22, 2010

Sunflower bathing well.

sunflower plant

sunflower plants.

I did a post on sunflowers on the 9th of March about sunflowers taking position on vegetable beds.    These sunflowers are really going into the second generation. 
Now they grow at different locations. The majority stay on the same vegetable as the mother plants used to be. These somehow suffer from pest attact, grasshoppers mostly. The other six sunflower plants are on tomato bed, which grow better. The leaves are wide and big. Other than the fact that they experience positive effect from tomato plants nearby, the bed was in fact previously occupied by winged beans plants. 

Winged beans are able to 'fix' the all important plant food Nitrogen from the atmosphere. This is stored in small but visible 'nodules ' on the root system, and is often left in the soil after the plant's death. The Nitrogen is obtained from the atmosphere by a symbiotic relationship with the nodules and certain bacteria (Rhizobium). For that reason, the soil is now very fertile in that bed.






~ bangchik 
Putrajaya, Malaysia


 

10 comments:

  1. Interesting to learn how winged beans plant contributed in improving soil fertility! That's something new to me.

    I can't wait to see those sunflowers blooming in your garden, BangChik!

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  2. Bangchik hi, very informative post, thanks for sharing.....please visit my new horticultural website www.hortist.com, hope you will find it completely of your interest......nice day :)

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  3. How tall do your kind of sunflowers get? I have got seeds for several different kinds, going to create a wall/fence on one side of my yard with them. That is a good idea putting beans near them...I was thinking of growing some beans up the sunflower stalks. Hope you are well!

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  4. I think it's a great idea to grow sunflowers with the vegetables. I wait to see how they look blooming along side with the tomatoes. I like the way plants often benefit from one another. In pioneer days Native Americans in my area of the USA grew a "three sisters" garden, consisting of corn, beans, and squash. The beans used the corn stalks as support, the corn benefited from the nitrogen of the beans, and the squash grew well under the filtered shade of the other two. The Native Americans may not have understood nitrogen fixation, but they knew this planting scheme worked.

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  5. Oh macam tu rupanya. Funny how sunflowers feel so western and winged beans so "kampung" and yet they not just get along well but needed each other.

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  6. Good progress! I would be growing some later. I hope to see them growing as healthy as yours.

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  7. I'm sure the sunflowers will love the soil conditions.

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  8. J.C. ~ The fertilizing effect doesn't come with winged beans only... in fact all beans!. About the sunflower, if the mother DNA is passed on to the second generation well, their height should be 2 feet the most. Who knows they may just want to be free and grow tall as their ancestors in the land where bison once roam free.

    Hortist ~ thanks for the comments. I will check out your latest website.

    GardenMom ~ How tall?.. huh, the mother plant grew to a height of 2 feet before it decided to bloom and gave birth to 35 seeds. It should be normal for the second generation to follow the footsteps of the mother. But nature will have its plan...

    debsgarden ~ thanks for the info about the three sisters. The old practice may lack scientific reasoning, but it must have gone through some iteration over thousands of years, perfecting the effective gardening along the way. So is traditional medicine...,

    ~bangchik
    Putrajaya, Malaysia.

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  9. Wendy ~ yes, being supportive with one another.

    Ocean Girl ~ you are right. There is no straight forward answer. Plants are very much down to earth, and they practice harmony!

    Stephanie ~ great! lets compare notes.

    Jo ~ I guess they love the improved soil condition.

    ~bangchik
    Putrajaya, Malaysia

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