Gardening: They Do What With Their Nodules?! O_o
Which is probably why I ended up with a lot of dead plants.
It always seemed simple enough. You plant a seed, water it, watch it grow. Later on I learn all sorts of things that sound more scientific than simple gardening. It’s always amazing to me the magic of what plants can do, and what they need to do it. In this post I’m going to take a brief moment to give a couple of tips about making your garden healthier.
First things first, your plants need three basic, and highly important, things to survive and thrive.
However, I will be focusing on atmospheric nitrogen (N2). Atmospheric nitrogen is a type of N that plants can’t use without a little magic. Simply put, N2 comes from the air, not the soil, and plants can’t “breath” it.(N), or more specific,
But guess what? There are a number of plants that can take N2 and convert it in to usable N! These plants have what’s called “Root Nodule Symbioses“. In other words, in their roots they have bacteria that gathers and converts N2 from the air to N, which it then uses. When that plant dies the usable N is transferred to the soil. In the process it naturally fertilises the soil and feeds the other plants around it. These types of plants have been used for many years in crop rotation
You know, what people did before all the cheap, nasty chemical companies came along. Funny how food tasted better way back when, isn’t it? 😐
The most common family of plants that have this ability are the “Legume” family, Fabaceae, but there are a few exceptions to this rule. Below I will give you list of just some of those plants that can do this amazing thing for you gardens. I highly recommend adding a couple to your little patches. Some of the things listed are groups (such as beans), so keep in mind that the picture doesn’t always represent the only plant you can use. 😉
The Happy Little Helpers List