Preparing Gardens for Spring-Without Tilling

Preparing gardens for spring planting can be a lot less work than traditionally thought. There are many benefits to growing a no-till garden.

Preparing gardens for spring planting can be a lot less work than traditionally thought. There are many benefits to growing a no-till garden.

One of the biggest ones is how much less work it takes when prepping garden beds for Spring. When you plant no-till, all you have to do is move back your mulch and plant in the fresh, soft, moist soil that you’ve created underneath.

Benefits of no-til gardening

Another benefit to no-till gardening is there is far less weeding that has to be done. How can this be true? The first reason is because of the heavy mulching, the weeds are smothered out and weed seeds that are in the soil are not tilled up and brought to light where they will germinate.

No-till gardens require much less watering which saves water, time and money on your water bill. The mulch keeps the soil moist by reducing evaporation. It also reduces the loss of soil from water washing it away and the wind blowing it away or erosion.

When we don’t till the soil, we prevent damage to the beneficial microbes in the soil. Those microbes lead to healthy, happy plants that thrive in the no-till environment.

Prepping no til garden beds for spring

 



Preparing Gardens for Spring-Without Tilling

If you practice no-til gardening, instead of firing up your tiller and spending hours digging the soil up, you’ll just be picking a few weeds here and there and planting. Once you have done that, you can make rows in the mulch and plant. Once the plants are about 4 inches tall, you just replace the mulch around the base of the plant and let it continue to grow.

If you need help getting started in your garden, click here for videos that can help!

Beginning Gardening Videos

How do I start a no-till garden?

The first thing you need to do to build a no-till garden is to lay down thick layers of newspaper or cardboard and moisten it. Smothering out the existing grass or weeds is the first step. Next, you lay down some form that will hold your soil in your beds. After you have a border for the bed, fill it will soil and compost mixed. Then cover the top with a thick layer, 4-5 inches of mulch.

Prepping no til garden beds for spring

No-Till vegetable gardening

I use whatever I can find to mulch. Grass clippings (well dried), dead leaves that my friends have raked up, straw or whatever I can get my hands on. I prefer free, so leaves are my favorite. My friend brings me loads of them from her yard. I love that. I give her a big box of bags and she brings them to me full. Click here for ideas to get mulch for free.

Make sure when you are preparing garden beds for winter that you add a nice layer of compost. I put about two inches on the beds. Then cover the beds with 4-5 inches of mulch and see them next spring. I call this putting the garden to bed for winter. Click here to see more about preparing garden beds for winter. 

You will be amazed at the quality and texture of soil you will get in spring. The worms and microbes do all the work. You get the amazing garden. Click here for more ways to get great garden soil. 

Growing no-till is not problem or work free, but it is much less labor-intensive than traditional till gardening. Prepping your garden beds in the spring will be a snap compared to what you are used to. I totally recommend the no-till method to anyone. I hope you will give it a try. Happy gardening!

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Preparing Gardens for Spring-Without Tilling

 

 

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4 comments

  1. Robin says:

    This is so interesting! I never thought about what tilling does to the microbes in the soil – honestly, I never thought about the microbes at all, hahah! Would love to have a justification for not having to till next year – so hard on your arms and back!

  2. Yavonna says:

    Good to know

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