ADVICE NEEDED!

Joined
Apr 13, 2022
Messages
1
Reaction score
0
Location
Devon
Country
United Kingdom
I have recently taken on an allotment but it is on a very bumpy slope. Although I'm very interested in the no dig method I feel I need to level the ground before I can even start using it. How long after I've disturbed the soil etc could the ground behave like a no dig space if I just add compost etc to the beds once levelled?
Any advice on how to proceed once my allotment is workable would be very much appreciated. Many thanks! Emma.
 
Joined
May 26, 2021
Messages
44
Reaction score
19
Location
Lansing, MI
Hardiness Zone
5b/6a
Country
United States
The no dig method isn't a religion to be adhered to, it's more of a guiding principle that some people follow more closely than others. I'd worry about doing what you have to do to make your garden a usable and enjoyable space first and foremost. If the soil your adding is good you'll likely get very good results the first year and if you do the proper amendments and add an inch or so of compost every year you should continue to have good results. I've had impressive first year crops with a bulk compost/sand/topsoil mix that a local landscape company sells.

If you're starting with worn-out and/or compacted soil I'd add compost along with your choice of amendments and till them relatively deep, as much as 5 or 6 inches. Even if you're starting with decent uncompacted soil I'd still till/scratch the compost and other amendments into the top inch or two of soil, all this while doing whatever is necessary to achieve the leveling that you want.
 
Joined
Feb 13, 2021
Messages
3,495
Reaction score
2,173
Country
United Kingdom
No dig sounds like a good idea on a slope, dig it and everything tends to end up at the bottom. I would be inclined to simply level out the big lumps and then carry straight on. On the whole plants want to grow, it's what they do, you can gradually get it more level as you go adding more in the hollows.
Is it not covered in weeds though? That has been the case with both the allotments I took over.
 
Joined
Oct 8, 2017
Messages
6,944
Reaction score
5,096
Location
Birmingham, AL USA
Hardiness Zone
8a
Country
United States
If you spray it with sugar water (molasses) at 1 ounce per gallon every two weeks, hyphae will grow across the summer softening the soil to an amazing depth. Of course you can add organic fertilizer and whatnot, but feeding bacteria, which become organic matter themselves as they die off and are feasted upon by fungi are the beginnings of the no till concept. The use of chemicals, including fertilizers, will stop the natural processes, and it will not soften.
 
Joined
Oct 8, 2017
Messages
6,944
Reaction score
5,096
Location
Birmingham, AL USA
Hardiness Zone
8a
Country
United States
I think many 2 gallon sprayers are loosely oriented to 1000 sf because industry standards for herbicides but I will dump 2g in 1500 sf.It is not a hard rule, and in fact a little more to start hurt nobody, but it is a form of fertilization, that being the C of the COH that comes before NPK. Thus I would treat it as any other liquid fertilizer. It is not the initial phases that would be problematic, but like any man made imbalance, too much late in the season would contribute to overfertilization. The key is very little, but never miss the frequency of application or you will starve the biodome you have been working so hard to build up.

1% is 37.9 mL so two fat TBSP per gallon is good.
 
Last edited:

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments. After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.

Ask a Question

Members online

Forum statistics

Threads
27,080
Messages
260,028
Members
13,524
Latest member
Cauliflowerhead

Latest Threads

Top