In previous articles, we covered the concept of growing in guilds, or growing crops together that share common requirements. We also looked at the maximum efficiency of grouping three guilds or beds together to grow in what I call triads.
But we also know about the proven importance of plot rotation to soil health and crop resilience. In this application, too, the guild concept has notable advantages, especially for backyard gardeners who grow in very small spaces.
In the text and infographic below, let’s look at how growers can execute crop plot rotation in very small spaces.
1. Crop Rotation Schedule (below)
The crop rotation schedule for very small-scale growers will be the same as for other growers. The difference is the limited plot size.
For very small growers, this means most of the rotation groups are held in reserve over the years. These crops are only planted when it is their turn to occupy the very small garden space.
2. Very Small Plot Crop Rotation (above)
A very small-scale backyard gardener may only grow a guild of one triad as their entire plot. Or maybe they grow up to three triads as their entire plot.
This limits the number of rotation groups that can actually practically grow in any one year.
As such the guild crop rotation is managed over the years by growing only one to three rotation groups each year. In this way the grower can also focus on a limited number of varieties each year for best management practices.
For instance managing disease on very small property becomes problematic if all crops are grown in a small plot at the same time each year. Why? Because there is always an adjacency issue.