Penny cress as a winter cover?

Helen Atthowe of talks about using winter annuals as a lving mulch. In this case, field penny cress – Thlaspi arvense.

It grows in the late fall or early spring and then, conveniently dies for the summer growing season, thus leaving behind a light mulch that makes it difficult for weeds to get a start.

This is a case of choosing your weeds. If you choose to have no weeds, then you will get weeds that you don’t want. The penny cress is an extremely polite weed: it does not compete for water or nutrients throughout the typical growing season, and it helps to retard other weeds.

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