Traditional Weed Control Methods in Rural Romania
For rural people, the summer season is not a time to play. This is the busiest time of year, when families work the land to produce food for winter for them and their livestock. There are horses pulling carts charged with hay, people bent down in the field, cultivating, horse hoeing, mowing, making haystacks.
There are traditional farm equipments still in use in rural areas that might seem primitive to other Western countries. Romania is one of the few European countries where it is common for small scale farmers to own horses instead of tractors and partner with them for food and transportation. They are preferred for hauling, plowing and hoeing.
Horse Hoeing Husbandry – A Natural Option for Killing Weed
Weeding out is the hardest part of all. When done without any chemical inputs, it involves a lot of physical labor. Many gardeners still remove weeds by hand, with a grub hoe, or with horse.
Killing weed plays a very important part in traditional farming, providing all nutrients the crops need. Plants like onion, garlic, planted in rows of 12 inches apart can only be weeded out by hand, by manually pulling out the weeds with their roots. Corn or potato crops, with a big distance between the rows can be weeded out by use of a grub hoe, or with horse.
A one row horse hoe is used for hoeing weeds out from between lines of plants. It is attached to a horse for field work and the farmer holds the two handles. Weed control is not an option, mainly when the crop is small, or growing slower than the weeds. Weeds have accelerated growth patterns, absorb water reserves from the soil, and compete for nutrients with the crops, slowing and eventually stopping their growth. Hoeing is ceased when plants are tall enough to make shaddow, so that the weeds will stop growing and sprouting.
Hay Making in Romania
Romanian Traditional Clothing From Bucovina