‘No dig’ gardening might sound too good to be true, but not only is it a thing, it’s really catching on! It’s also great for the environment, produces bumper crops, and means you can enjoy your garden without the backache!
It’s been a year of lockdowns with a real ‘stay at home’ sentiment. And that’s seen a huge, renewed interest in the grow your own movement. No dig gardening, and specifically no dig beds are helping many get down (but not too dirty) in the garden. No dig beds are perfect for those new to gardening or those with limited space. Taking up a new hobby like gardening is also incredibly beneficial to our mental health, and adding a no dig element lightens the load.
It’s now understood that letting soil rest and limiting disturbance is far more beneficial in discouraging weed growth and improving plant and veggie quality. With no dig beds, you only disturb the soil with actual planting or some occasional light hoeing. Then, it’s just a case of adding a compost mulch once a year.
So, if you’re looking to embrace no dig gardening, here are our 7 top tips to getting started.
1. Weed things out
If you’re unlucky enough to have brambles tall enough to have crowned, cut these down. Any other weeds can be left.
2. Be prepared
Cover the area you want to be your no dig bed with thick cardboard.
3. Get weighed down
Secure your cardboard coverings with stones that are weighty enough to keep them in place, but small and loose enough to enable drainage.
4. Cover things up
Completely cover your cardboard with six inches (15 cm) of good quality compost.
5. Leave it alone
Give the cardboard time to completely break down and become a natural layer, which will also mean all your weeds are smothered and taken care of.
6. Get planting
Now it’s a case of choosing your plants and crops, and getting them in the ground!
7. Top things up
Remember that like all soil, your no dig beds still need enriching, so top up your compost each year to rejuvenate it.
By smothering the ground in both cardboard and compost, your no dig beds automatically kill and smother the weeds by blocking out the light. And, as cardboard is completely absorbed by soil over time, no dig beds are completely organic too. No chemicals, and no digging – just as we promised!Tags: Corker Outdoor, Garden Inspiration, Lockdown Gardening, No Dig Beds, No Dig Gardening, Show Gardens