I started out by taking out a little tree that was in my garden, and in my way. We planted it years ago, but it never did take off, and a couple years ago the goats stripped the bark off it, and it really never had a chance after that. I poked a shovel into the ground all around it and didn’t hit any roots, so I gave it a good push and it pretty much popped right out – the root ball wasn’t any bigger than the day we planted it!
Then I began layering cardboard on the ground, outlining my beds and walking paths. Cardboard goes on the walking path, and it will be covered with wood chips. Newspaper and compost will go on the planting beds. This is ‘sheet mulching’ or ‘lasagna gardening’. It’s supposed to allow you to start a garden on a grassy area without any digging.
We have a lot of these red ‘landscaping timbers’ left over that we bought for a project years ago and they have been in the shed ever since. I got some stakes for them (they look like ten inch nails) and used them to outline the beds – just to help keep the wood chips and compost on the right sides of the line. If I don’t like them later they will be easy to remove. I like straight lines, so I think they will be helpful.
So that is the layout for half of the garden. The other half will have a raised bed/cold frame in the back, and a couple shorter rows in the remaining space. I’m also saving some space for a couple narrow beds up against the shelter where I can grow some lettuce and spinach without it getting too much sun, which was a problem when I tried to start them during the heat of summer last year.
So now I just need compost, and wood chips. I’m on the list to get wood chips from the county, still waiting to hear back on that. But for the compost…see the next post.