No-dig garden reclamation!

Last week we went to France and helped out volunteering in someone’s garden. They wanted an area of garden reclaimed – this is how I did it.

For anyone not familiar with mulching, this is a really simple way of reclaiming any area of grass or your overgrown beds for cultivation.

If the weeds are really tall, then cut or bend them to lay them flat. If its brambles you will need to cut them back and remove them.

Get a load of cardboard boxes. Most people have a few! Brown is preferable as it hasn’t been coloured or bleached.

Take off all the tape and other non biodegradable labels. Lay the cardboard out flat, overlapping the boxes by about 10cm. The boxes exclude light so the weeds don’t grow, they create a good environment for worms, and provide food for them too!

On top of the boxes, put a layer of compost or topsoil. It could also be grass clippings, rotted manure, or a thin layer of straw.

Water well so the cardboard gets nice & wet.

Then put a sheet of water permeable plastic over the top of the mulched area. Peg it down or weigh it down with wood or stones.

You can now leave this for a few months, preferably until the following spring.

When you uncover the area, the worms will have turned everything into a nice fine soil. If any strong weeds remain e.g. bramble roots, they should be weakened and easier to pull out.

Plant out your veggies & flowers into your lovely new bed!