Week 2 – Soil Restoration Program: Lasagna anyone?

The rest of the garden still sits unturned and with each passing day. I find some way to put it off.  Should I till?  After a talk with my friend Bronwyn, who referenced a documentary of a guy who covered his garden with yard waste and then used just enough soil overtop to plant directly into, I decide to pursue my own little version of this plan.

Putting my gourmet chef hat on and my intuitive cooking skills to use: I’m making lasagna!  Noah suggests I put down cardboard directly on top of the grass and weeds as the base.  I grab all the cardboard I can find, it’s not much, but I find a huge roll of large construction paper. I use this along with the cardboard as my “noodle layer.”
I spend the day raking out all the planted areas around the house gathering leaves, brush and dead plants. I pull the same stuff out of the compost.  Anything considered “Brown Matter.”  I dump this on top of cardboard/paper noodle layer.  This’ll be my meaty layer.
Next, I hit the compost again shoveling out all the food and plant waste that hasn’t quite made it to the soil stage yet.  I’m mentally thanking my brother Sean along the way for dumping so much into the pile over his last year in the house.  It is the perfect consistency for my vegetable layer.  As I make a pretty large dent into the compost, I realize I’m killing 2 birds with one stone and getting this massive, messy pile cleaned out to reconstruct the area.  I pile my veggie layer over the meaty layer and spread it around with the rake.
A Lasagna isn’t lasagna without cheese, so I hit the compost again and shovel the remaining layer, which happens to be deep, dark, rich soil.  Perfectly fertile with tons of worms!  I take one wheel barrel load after the other and spread it around.  After about 7 or 8 trips. I have enough to cover the area for my makeshift “raised bed.”  The cheesy layer is finished and ready for baking.  I wet down the bed and let it cook the rest of the afternoon in the sun then letting it cool to breath during the night.  Tomorrow, I plant – the seeds and transplants await the lasagna feast.
PS – With no more yard waste, compost and rich soil left.  I turned on my beliefs and had my neighbor till the remainder of the garden (just a small square).  The upside?  The soil is loose and my compost is completely cleaned out.

Seedling Update 

  • Watermelon – First place running.
  • Carrots – Making an effort.
  • Tomatoes – Growing like weeds, everywhere.  Thank you compost!
  • Tomato Transplants – Hanging in there.
  • Zuccinni  – nada
  • Squash Transplants – Vibrant by night, limp by day.  We’ll see…
  • Eggplant – nada
  • Basil – Pushing through!
  • Spinach – nada
  • Pepper Patch – nada
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