Category Archives: The No Till No Dig Way
I made a new friend who is not yet gardening and was rather intimidated by it and quite sure it would take him a long time to learn how to grow food. He mentioned to me that he thought he should take a Gardening for Dummies Class, and that what I had to offer was
My garden grows beautifully. All I do is feed the soil with lots of organic wastes. I don’t dig, I don’t worry, I don’t fertilize plants and I don’t spray plants. All in all I would say that growing the No Till No Dig Way is an easier, more successful way to nurture a food garden.
It is a tough job to have to nurture plants through their entire life cycles, constantly guessing at what their nutritional needs might be and then providing all of those nutrients and minerals regularly. It is a losing proposition doing battle with insects protecting helpless plants from hoards of unchecked leaf chewers and suckers, root boring nematodes, and countless fungal, and bacterial infections. I don’t know how a farmer could make a dime off of a farm that is dependent on the many constant and costly inputs necessary to wage a chemical war against nature.
The conventional approach to composting is that we should turn our compost piles. I have already discarded the conventional approach to gardening: I won’t turn the soil. It occurs to me that it is past time to re-examine my approach to composting.
The no dig layer mound being a human concoction meant to approximate an excellent soil environment has lots of spaces for air. It is imperative therefore that we keep our feet off of the mounds. If we step on our work we compress it and everything changes. The mound compressed is no longer an ideal garden.
To grow in an organic manner in such a way as to decrease the cost of your inputs, increase the health and disease resistance in the garden, and increase garden yields, a grower must focus on the soil. This focus must be on maintaining optimum populations of the microbes and the invertebrates that are present in healthy soils.
The concept of this no dig bed is simple. You don’t till or disturb the soil below, and you create a mound that roughly approximates a balanced pile of stable scrapings. This is a great way to start quickly and these mounds feed the soil below as the growing season progresses attracting beneficial insects and microbes to your growing area, and you won’t have to fertilize the plants growing in these mounds.
Soil is not just a lifeless anchor for plants it is a universe of life forms and systems which interact intimately with plants and their systems to form one ecosystem.
In an effort to quickly bring forth new gardens for this planting season I have completed and planted my second No Dig Garden Box. It is a little different than my first box mentioned in The No Dig Garden Box I built this latest box with heavier lumber and it is wider and longer. I
I chose the no dig style of gardens for my new gardens so that I could get my extra planting started right away. The no dig garden box is a quick and easy way to get an excellent outdoor garden started right away. You don’t dig this garden you simply build it up. This No Dig Garden is often called a Lasagna Garden. It is built up in layers.
I am having a revolution in the garden of my mind. That garden happens long before I tie on a bandana, don gloves hat and clippers and walk out the door. As I prepare several of my garden sections for the South Florida Fall planting I am for the first time planning not to dig