No Dig Gardens – How to Build One (Google / Home and Garden)

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http://houserenovating.blogspot.com/2008/10/no-dig-gardens-how-to-build-one.html

No Dig Gardens – How to Build One

The no dig garden is exactly what it describes…a fertile garden bed with no digging at all. It involves layering clean, organic materials that will literally compost around your plants as they grow. The No Dig Garden is built on top of the ground, so you can build a garden anywhere. This makes it extremely attractive for those sites that have poor soil or are weed infested. It”s also a great method of gardening for those that can”t (or don”t want to) dig a garden patch! The site you choose for your garden must get at least 5 hours of sunlight a day. Drainage will be good because of the materials that will be used in making the garden. If you are planting over lawn or weeds, mow them to ground level. If you are planting on a hard surface, put down some cushioning organic material first (like seaweed or leaves).

To build your no dig garden start with a layer of newspaper (no colour printing), at least 6mm (1/4 inch) thick. Surround the garden with some sort of border material. This can be bricks, logs, planks or rocks but should be at least 20-25CM high (8-10 inches) to contain the organic material within.

Lay down a layer of lucerne hay leaving no gaps, to a height of 10cm (about 4 inches). Layer some good organic fertilizer on top to a height of 20mm (1 inch). This can be just about any sort of good quality material like chicken, horse, cow or sheep manure.

Add another thick layer of straw to the garden 150mm (6 inches) and another layer of fertilizer and then top it off with a 100mm (4 inches) of compost.

Water the garden until it”s soaking and let it settle for a few days before planting.

Seedlings do better than seeds in the no dig garden.

Here”s what will happen. The seedlings will get a kick start in the rich, compost top soil. The fertilizer underneath will start the ”composting” of the lucerne hay and straw. The composting will generate heat and biological activity that will really kick along the seedling growth. The roots will further break down the straw and hay and it in turn will become solid enough to support the growing plants.

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Judy Williams (http://www.no-dig-vegetablegarden.com) splits her time between being a media executive and an earth mother goddess. No Dig Vegetable Gardens represents a clean, green way to grow your own food. The site covers all aspects of growing, cooking and preserving your harvest.’, 170, ‘No Dig Gardens – How to Build One, Landscaping-Gardening, Landscaping-Gardening articles, Landscaping-Gardening information, about Landscaping-Gardening, what is Landscaping-Gardening, Landscaping & Gardening Information’, ‘No Dig Gardens – How to Build One plus articles and information on Landscaping-Gardening

Published by

Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.