A quick preview of my Vegetable Back to Eden Garden in my front yard. I’ll be following this garden as the summer progresses.
In this post ‘Goods in the Garden’ Debra introduced me to Back to Eden. So glad she did. I’m giving it a go!
This is an experiment in improving my hard clay dirt and making my gardening efforts easier! Because I have really…. very….extremely…. hard dirt.
Did I say I have hard clay dirt? And rock. Yeah don’t forget the rock.
If you have not seen the Back to Eden Film you should check it out. I’m not giving this method my complete 100% thumbs up just yet… but I’m very impressed. I’m going to give it a shot.
Last summer I had a particular garden area that was doing very poorly. I figured it couldn’t make it any worse so this is the perfect area to try this out. We had to trim a bunch of trees for fire prevention (I live in wildfire area) so we took advantage of it and chipped all the branches we were trimming. And covered the garden area with a thick layer.
I did immediately notice an improvement in the watering situation. Time will tell if it will actually improve the soil quality. Because I really do have hard clay dirt… oh I think I mentioned that already.
Some things I noticed and need to remember.
Some things I’ve seen in my research into this vegetable garden method are not made very clear in the film. Check out the multitude of videos on you tube for some interesting insights.
It’s not JUST the bark. Its the other additions too. Amendments are added to the garden in the form of chicken manure and scratchings as well as the bark covering. If you give this a shot be sure to keep that in mind.
Many start a garden this way by adding a thick layer of compost on the ground, covering that compost with a mulch of wood chips, and planting right in the rich compost underneath. Look at you tube, there are many videos of people trucking in loads of already composted material for a base layer.
In my case, I’m not starting out with a big layer of compost underneath the covering of bark. We are adding some amendments to our soil and then covering… but it is still poor soil. I simply can’t afford to buy a truck load of composted mulch to start out with. My goal is to improve what I have. If you are doing it this way, be realistic and know that it will take time.
I have little organic materials in our dirt. Nothing like the soil in Washington where Back to Eden Film was filmed. I’m not expecting a miracle. But I’m hopeful!
We get less rainfall than Paul in Back to Eden gets. He mentions that he never has to water even though they live in a dry climate. Uhmmm I live where we only get a few inches of water a year…. I get even less than he does. I do expect to water. I also hope my watering needs will lessen more and more each year. THAT would be cool.
So here is to my new experiment! I’ll keep you updated.