Less work in your garden
No-dig gardens are great because they’re less work — and you can make one just about anywhere.
No-dig gardens have even been created on top of concreted patches or on an existing lawn. Just remember, if you are building your bed on concrete, you’ll need a layer of sticks or other coarse material on the base to ensure that the water can drain away.
Generally, you can start your no-dig garden by:
First choosing a sunny position then building the sides using boards or bricks.
Next lay sheets of newspaper to cover the base. This layer should be about 50mm thick, with the edges well overlapped.
Next spread a layer of coarse straw, followed by nitrogen-rich pea straw.
Sprinkle on some Yates Blood & Bone, Dynamic Lifter Organic plant food and some garden lime Water well. If you have room, you can add more similar layers.
Tip a few circles of rich, homemade compost and some Black Magic Seed Raising Mix on top of the soil.
Water, drain and plant seeds or seedlings.
As seedlings begin to grow, start feeding them with a liquid food like Yates Black Magic Seedling fertiliser.
Water regularly but gently so that you don’t wash away your seeds or baby plants.
As the plants grow, the whole yummy jumble starts to break down and create its own rich soil.
In spring you can sow seeds of beans, sweet corn, tomatoes, courgettes and pumpkins.
In autumn plant cabbages, broad beans, peas, radish and spinach.
When the crop is finished, you can add another layer and replant.
It’s important to remember the words “no-dig”. If you dig the garden, you disturb the layers. Just add more compost, manure and straw when it’s needed between crops.
Try to practise simple crop rotation by making successive plantings from different plant groups. Follow a leafy crop like lettuce with a fruiting crop such as tomatoes.
Weeding should be minimal but sometimes straw will produce seedlings. These can be simply scuffed out when they’re tiny and left on the surface to die and add their goodness to the mix.
This process is very easy but, if you forget how to go about it, you’ll find the directions in the latest (77th) edition of Yates Garden Guide.