Say what???

Sometimes I think my husband just dares me to blog about certain things… such as a couple of weeks ago when we passed this sign while driving down the freeway…

First of all… am I the only one who had never heard of “green manure”? I mean, no, I didn’t grow up on a farm, but I do consider myself a country girl, so you would think I would have at least heard of such a thing! Well, I hadn’t.

Anyway, we were tootling along I-90 through the boring farm country of eastern Washington heading towards Seattle, when we passed a sign that said something like, “Crop signs in the fence row. Next 14 miles.”

“Okay!” I said, just to break the monotony. “Let’s see how many different crops we can see for the next 14 miles. We’ll keep track to see who spots the most different ones.”

So we started watching… “Wheat… Potatoes… Field Corn… Sweet Corn…” I read them off from my side of the road.

All of a sudden my husband and oldest daughter started laughing. “That sign said ‘Green Manure’!!” they insisted.

“No way!” I was sure they had mis-read it. After all, who ever heard of “green manure”? And even if there was such a thing (I was imagining something really nasty that is best left unmentioned… after all, I do know what cow manure is!), why in the wide world would it be listed on a crop sign?

“That’s what it said!” They were equally insistent. Then they saw it again! “Right there! It really says ‘green manure’!” Of course I missed it and still didn’t believe them.

The 14 miles passed by and we saw no more signs to prove or disprove their reading abilities. But… a few days later we returned home by the same route. This time my husband deliberately slowed down and carefully watched. “Look!! See? That sign says ‘GREEN MANURE’!!”

Would you believe? Sure enough! It did say that. I saw it with my own eyes. And I’m a good reader!

My husband was satisfied that he was right. “I can’t wait to see what you blog about this!” he said. (He actually expected me to show my ignorance for the whole world to see and snicker at!)

But I admit… I was completely baffled. What is green manure?? Well, I may be ignorant, but I know where to go for the answers! I Googled it as soon as I got home… and there it is, right there on Wikipedia in black and white… or should I say “green” and white?

“In agriculture, a green manure is a type of cover crop grown primarily to add nutrients and organic matter to the soil. Typically, a green manure crop is grown for a specific period, and then plowed under and incorporated into the soil.”

I just love Google and Wikipedia, don’t you? You can find out about practically anything with a few strokes of the keyboard!

But… green manure??? Who knew?? At least it’s not something nasty!

Are you snickering at me?


  • Dori

    How funny. I would have thought it was freshly “produced” manure, you know,not yet dried and maybe still steeming? ROTFL I have heard of crops grown just to be plowed under but didn’t know it was called green manure.

  • Aliene

    Green Manure! Well, we have a lot of cover crops here but I never knew they were called green manure. Just asked Silas. His answer? Fresh manure! So I was able to inform him, thanks to the Cooks. A good lesson for us all!

    Aunt lene

  • Monie

    Well, I was raised on a farm umpteen years ago and I would have figured green manure was the fresh kind like Dori said, but I also know that the fresh stuff would have burned up any crops it was put on, sooo, I guess I don’t know as much as I thought I did.

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