On this week’s episode, Greg and Travis talk about using a tiller in the vegetable garden. The guys discuss several situations when it is appropriate to use a tiller, and other situations when it is not appropriate. It’s not a good idea to use a tiller immediately before planting. This is because tilling introduces many air pockets into the soil which can result in less than ideal seed germination. It’s also not appropriate to till when garden weeds have gone to seed because that will simply bury those seeds where they can remain dormant and germinate later. Finally, tilling should not be done when plants are established because this can cause severe damage to feeder roots. Tillers should not be used as a cultivating tool because they create too much disturbance. Tillers are great tools in certain applications. These include breaking new ground, preparing ground for root crops, incorporating cover crops into the soil and leveling the ground after hilled crops like corn or potatoes. Lastly, they talk about the different brands of high-quality tillers on the market. Up until 2001, the Troy-Bilt tiller was the top-notch rear tine tiller on the market. But that company experienced a buyout and are no longer the quality they once were. Currently, the top two brands available are the Grillo and BCS tillers, which are both manufactured in Europe. Both are high-quality machines with many different attachments for mowing, plowing, tilling and more!
On the Show & Tell segment this week, the guys talk about their squash plants that have been surprisingly successful during the summer heat. Travis mentions that he has two varieties currently growing — Tempest and Patty Pan. He’s been giving lots of attention to these plants to manage the squash bug population. He’s also been applying fungicides twice a week to deal with the excessive rainfall they’ve been having. He alternates between Liquid Copper and Complete Disease Control applications.
On the Q&A segment, they answer questions about shade cloth and spraying corn. They mention that they personally don’t use shade cloth, but instead only grow during certain weather windows where success is more likely. When spraying corn for earworms, they prefer to spray the entire plant when possible.