No till is nonsense. In a 4 by 12 foot area, a lot of vegetable can be grown. Slap some deck board together and fill the cavity with good soil and grow. Carrots, tomatoes, beets, potatoes, parsnips, lettuce, onions, leeks, cucumbers on a trellis and you will even have room to spare. Vegetables can be very close together and thrive.I have been reading alot about it. I have a small back yard . So theres not a lot of space. I think it would be a good way to garden with out having to break up the ground much. I would love to hear thoughts from others who have tried no till gardening.
I really, really don't till!You still have to do the initial ground breaking work to establish the garden. It's a lie that weeds won't grow if you don't till. You'll have them in the soil when you first turn it over, and they'll come from all over, in your compost and seed packets even. Plus, you have root and rhizome fragments left from when you remove the "lawn" that will continue to grow.
Mulching is good to keep moisture in, but top dressing fertilizer puts the nutrients on the surface, and guess what, the plants grow up to a foot underground, so it's really best to till under at least once a growing season.
Try raising some short Indian corn and put the beans in next to the corn about a week after you plant the corn. It will help shade the beans and the beans will use the corn as a trellis.I'm working on learning the square foot garden method as well. It is very nice to work with and my beds are raised. I had a fair harvest but the areas are full sun all summer and my beans fried. Learning what things needed more space is the difficulty for me, because the rutabagas over grew the carrots too quickly.
I did use store purchased compost as the dump was "out" of it. I'll need to do more drive by's this coming season.
I did not till either; I put down really thick newspapers and I think the weeds that I did get were dropped in by the birds. I cannot begin to tell you how few weeds I had compared to the last 30 years of gardening at 2 houses. And I didn't really raise my beds just placed the square foot gardening box on top of my already there garden.I really, really don't till!
I put out proffessional quality woven weed block and put the raised beds on top. The beds are 12 inches deep, so yes, the roots may go down into the soil beneath but for the most part, that weed barrier works really well.
I use a hoe, I don't walk on it so it doesn't get compressed.
You could use pigs, they'll till your garden for free and eat the bugs too! They love grubs.Heres the thing. Mich. season is so short I tried to use a small greenhouse in the house and things started great. But as soon as i moved it outside the winds and extreme rain knocked all the pots over. My outside garden was filled w/ weeds so i couldn't get in it even (tall woody weeds). Quite by accident the dogs started sneaking in my fenced garden. The more they sat,the more the weeds died. It will be interesting this spring to see if I can just throw a little plastic W/ bricks on it and plant. I cant plant til May but I am curious. No till by dogs.