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Gardening without digging

Is there a way to grow in the garden without having to dig or dig up the soil?

Gardening without digging, the famous no dig gardening as it is called abroad,is an ecological cultivation method that has been very popular in recent years in the amateur gardens.

The central idea is that by avoiding carving, the soil and beneficial soil microorganisms are brought to an ecological balance that favors the growth and fruiting of plants.

In the natural environment of a forest, the soil is enriched with nutrients through the organic matter that falls to the soil and is decomposed by the micro-organisms found in the soil.

Inspired by the biological processes that take place without human intervention in a natural environment, no-dig gardening is an alternative form of cultivation that allows us to plant in loose soil with excellent results, being at the same time ecologically friendly for the area we cultivate.

Let’s see in detail what are the main advantages of no-dig gardening and how we can grow our favorite vegetables and flowers without digging the soil.

What is gardening without digging? (no dig gardening) Gardening without digging is based on the creation of various layers with natural ecological materials that make up the soil in which the cultivation takes place. In its simplest form, we cover the surface of the garden with a mulch material (such as used cardboard boxes) and then add a natural substrate rich in organic matter to plant and grow our plants. An indicative way of gardening without digging is planting in raised flower beds which are small structures that cultivate us in soil that we place higher than the surface of the ground. What are the advantages of no-dig gardening? No dig gardening is particularly attractive to amateur gardeners as it offers several advantages in growing vegetables and herbs. It allows us to farm organically, enhancing natural soil processes, having control over the growth of weed systems and making farming operations more comfortable.

We grow organically in loose and fertile soil: No-dig gardening is an excellent method of organic farming that uses manure and compost to create an ecological and fertile planting medium. In this environment, valuable microorganisms and earthworms grow that improve the soil and its soil properties. We avoid the growth of new weeds: Placing the mulch materials on the soil, as well as creating a new substrate for planting, continued to grow less land (weeds) that are a frequent problem when we cultivate in the soil. The choice of fertile planting substrate offers our plants vigorous growth and rich production, without depending on the characteristics of the soil found in our garden. At the same time, due to the small depth of the planting substrate, the soil heats up more easily, helping the crops in the morning. Make gardening work less tiring: Digging is a particularly strenuous gardening task that often discourages many young gardeners and older people with limited mobility or arthritic problems. No-dig gardening offers a great alternative to growing with greater comfort and convenience.

What steps do we follow for no-dig cultivation? According to the method of gardening without digging (no dig gardening), in order to be able to cultivate successfully, we follow the following basic steps:

  1. We remove weed individuals from the garden If our garden has weed individuals that are tall enough and have strong shoots, we remove the weeds by hand or use a lawnmower to make the process easier.
  2. Place natural ground cover materials on top of the soil If our garden does not have dementia grasses or has a few low-growing weeds, we proceed normally with the process of placing some ground cover material on the surface of the garden soil. For ground cover material we can use opened cardboard boxes, wood chips, some fabric that gradually decomposes, even jute sacks. As the weeds do not find the required light, their germination and growth ceases to be a problem.
  3. Add Manure, Compost and Peat We create a fertile planting medium with organic matter for planting vegetables, aromatic plants and even ornamental plants by adding manure, compost and peat to the laid ground cover material. The thickness of the planting layer should be at least 15-20 cm for the plants to have good growth and production. Around the layer of organic materials, we can put perimeter bricks or wooden boards so that they do not go away with the rain and wind.
  4. We plant at suitable planting distances We plant the plants or sow seeds at suitable planting distances in the layer of organic materials we have made so that we have good root development, sunshine and ventilation and see plants with lush vegetation, many flowers and good fruiting.
  5. We install a drip irrigation system. We make sure to install a suitable drip irrigation system in the garden we created with no-dig gardening in order to have efficient and correct watering of the plants, while also achieving water savings.
  6. We continue to add organic matter. We renew the soil substrate of organic materials at least once a year, adding the required amount of new organic matter to enrich the soil with nutrients to maintain soil fertility and have good production.

And a secret for gardening without digging

No dig gardening can be a particularly economical way of farming, especially when we use compost and manure of our own production, in combination with recyclable materials at no cost for ground cover.