Members' Experiments

Green manure mixes for gardeners

We would like to test a diverse mix of winter green manures that are suitable for over winter use in a garden setting.

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Winter green manures are sown in the autumn to protect the soil over the winter. They help to protect the soil surface from heavy rainfall, which can damage the soil structure, causing it to set like concrete in drier weather. They also prevent nutrients from being washed out of the soil.

However, many winter green manures sold in gardening catalogues were originally designed for agricultural situations, often containing plants that become tough and difficult to chop down and incorporate into the soil.

We would like to test a diverse mix that is suited for a range of garden situations including no dig growing. We have already tested this over the winter of 2022-2023 but it’s always good to try things in more than one season.


To test a diverse green manure mix that is suitable for over winter use in a garden setting.

You will need

Two 1 x 1 m plots next to each other. Optionally you can try sowing it on more than one date, in which case you will need four plots.

We will provide

Seed, protocols and recording forms


September 2023 to April 2024

Time required

Around 1 hour to sow the trial, then 15 minutes every month to monitor the ground cover.

Maximum number of participants


Protocol for this experiment