- Author: Marime Burton
Lasagna gardening? ‘Sounds crazy even when you know what that means. Crazier still, it’s a gardening technique that really works.
A little like diets that promise you’ll lose 20 pounds a month and never feel hungry, lasagna gardening sounds improbable, exaggerated and a waste of time. Better to stick with tried and true methods that reward hard work, sacrifice and the results of long-term commitment.
So I thought, but much like those diets I can’t resist, it sounded so simple I was willing give it a try.
First of all the old garden bed does not require tilling. Just cover weeds and all with a layer of cardboard or 3-5 layers of newspaper. Be sure to cover everything well to eliminate little peeks of sun nourishing future weeds. Soak the layers to keep them in place.
Voilà! Decomposition begins in the dark under those layers, earthworms begin to happily tunnel through the dark moist area and the soil begins to loosen up. The grass or weeds break down fairly quickly because they are in the dark under the paper.
Top off the lasagna with alternating layers of “browns” such as fall leaves, shredded newspaper, peat, and pine needles with layers of “greens” such as vegetable scraps, garden trimmings, and grass clippings, just as in a compost pile. Sprinkle it now and then.
Fall is the perfect time to start the process. Just leave it alone until spring, then start planting!