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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Tillage, Bed Formation, and Planting to Moisture: A Guide for Beginning Specialty Crop Growers


Understanding tillage sequences is critical for good soil and bed preparation prior to spring planting. Ill-timed or poorly executed tillage will lead to frustration and soil cloddiness. This is especially true for more challenging soils higher in clay content. The specific sequences you use will depend on soil type and implement selection.

Planting to moisture is an often-overlooked planting techniquethat minimizes weed competition when planting large-seeded crops such as beans, squash, and some cover crops, especially in California’s Mediterranean climate. Potatoes and dry-farmed tomatoes can also be planted to moisture.

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