Building Soil With Lasagna Gardening

Lasagna gardening, or sheet mulching is a great way to create garden spaces without disturbing soil layers through tilling. In this post, I share some tips for maximizing the benefits of lasagna gardening as a first step to building great soil.
Our family decided to use the lasagna gardening method because our land is steeply sloped, and when we began to plant into it, we noticed that much of the topsoil from the hilltop had washed down to the lowlands due to poor agricultural practices. Our house and garden are situated near the top of the hill, and as such, the soil quality is poor. To create a healthy, resilient garden with few pests and disease, I knew I had to greatly improve my soil.
The raw materials of a lasagna garden bed.
Creating a new bed with sheet mulching.
A first year lasagna garden crop.
Teri :: Homestead Honey
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
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  • Em Hooper Em Hooper on Feb 12, 2015
    Before WWI, Benjamin F. Albaugh published a few books designed to help solve the problem of "The High Cost of Living." I have his 1917 "Home Gardening-Vegetables and Flowers," a revised version of his earlier, 1915, book. "Lasagna gardening" is another name for his introduction: The Sandwich System. I used his system in the raging summer heat of western Arkansas , with its thin soil, in the 70s-- and it worked beautifully. As some have mentioned, the heaviest work is hauling the materials to build the beds. luckily, I had chickens and cattle, so plenty of organic material from hayfield, barn, and henhouse. All of which I moved to the new hardpan garden site in a kid's little red wagon. Where I live now, those resources are not at hand. Now I layer my compost piles and turn them into garden beds. No tilling needed. Not sure I want to haul animal droppings in my car now, but have carried buckets of wood mulch. Every serious gardener, IMO, needs a pickup truck! I can highly recommend this method for growing long, straight carrots. Easy crop to start with, and properly stored they will keep quite awhile. Albaugh recommends boxing in the TOP of the bed with 6" wide boards before planting. The boards should be lightly nailed together so they can be knocked down for winter storage. If you can find a copy of this book, I recommend it highly. Wow, TMI? Cheers

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    • Em Hooper Em Hooper on Feb 12, 2015
      @Teri :: Homestead Honey Teri No need to turn them over even. Just layer them for the winter and plan the seeds in spring. Why do more work than necessary? LOL Here in the NC mtns. I planted english peas today. As soon as I get to it, beets and lettuce etc. Just pulled a few weeds from the bed and made holes with a stick and dropped the seeds w/ their coating of innoculant in the holes and then stepped on the soil to pack 'em in. 10 minutes and finished. My kind of garden these days!

  • Kayteelou Kayteelou on Feb 12, 2015
    Wow! I like these suggestions. Thank you.