Planting in no dig layers

by Glenys

When planting in no dig layers, how do the roots get nourishment from the soil below


Megan says...
Unless you live in the likes of Alaska — where rotting, composting and decaying slows down — you'll normally find that the layers all rot down or at least soften very quickly and the roots of the plants, which are deeper and wider than we think actually, go through the layers and into the soil below.

Usually most plants that go that deep have roots strong enough to break through any bits of paper that may still be there. The worms and other bugs do a good job of mixing the layers up too.

Also When planting in no dig layers, if I want to plant seedlings, I often dig with a trowel into the layers — through any paper, straw or strong compost and manure etc, and plant each seedling with a handful of soil in a hole.

It's not a good idea to plant carrots and some root crops into freshly made no dig beds because the new compost and possibly any barriers of leftover layers will make their roots fork. So with carrots it's best to wait a season until it's all rotted down, or plant into just straight soil.
~ Megan

Comments for Planting in no dig layers

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Mar 08, 2009
No dig for me!
by: Tom

By jiggery it is so true that the rot starts quickly. I lifted the layers of newspaper after a week and the worms and beetles scattered frantically. The place was alive and smelled earthy and composty already. Tom, no-dig first timer.

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