Planting Glory Garden: Here's How I Do It

I made this video for you while I was planting the garden this week in hopes that you may be able to glean some ideas. I’m certainly not an expert and I don’t have it all figured out, but this is the method I have evolved over the last several years. Some things I cover in the video:

Why I don’t till:

  • Tilling brings buried weed seeds to the surface and allows them to germinate. It also breaks up the roots of weeds like quack grass, crab grass, thistles, and bindweed into tiny pieces that send up new shoots. I have been able to reduce weeds by abandoning the rototiller.

  • Tilling destroys the natural soil structure by breaking up the soil into tiny particles. Although the garden soil initially seems loose and fluffy, it quickly settles and becomes compacted.

  • Because I do not till each year, I am able to use wood chips as mulch on the surface of the soil. They slowly break down, adding organic matter to the soil. I usually add fresh wood chips about every other year.

Here’s my step-by-step process of how I plant the garden:

1- Before I go out to the garden, I sit down and draw out a map on graph paper of where I want to plant things, making sure I rotate things around so they aren’t planted in the same area as last year.

2- I measure out my beds and mark the beginning and ends with flags. I like my beds to be 24” wide with 24” pathways in between.* I use wood chips on the pathways but leave the soil in the beds uncovered.

3- I prep the bed by clearing the surface of leaves, sticks, weeds, etc, then rake/hoe to break up the soil.

4- I scatter the seeds over the surface and then lightly rake to cover the seeds with a thin layer of soil.

Done!

*I use 24” wide beds for direct-seeded crops like lettuce, herbs, radishes, carrots, etc. For transplants like tomatoes, peppers, and squash, I space each plant about 4 feet apart and mulch around the entire area.

I hope you found that helpful! If you have any questions, you can leave a comment and I will reply!

P.S. If you are wondering WHEN is the right time to plant your garden, go to this blog post.

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