Views: 305, Replies: 19 » Jump to the end
Lazy Gardener's Lasagna

By kylaluaz
September 16, 2014

Lasagna garden bed creation is the way to go, I've decided. I've made many lasagna beds, and I find they are a quick and effective way of expanding garden space. It's also a great way to use what you have on hand and to make changes to an existing garden shape more easily than with other methods.

[View the item] Give a thumbs up

Name: Jo Ann Gentle
Pittsford NY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Heucheras Hellebores Container Gardener
Birds Region: New York Irises Garden Ideas: Master Level Avid Green Pages Reviewer Lilies
Image
ge1836
Sep 16, 2014 3:37 AM CST
Hope you post another picture of this area in bloom.
Name: Kyla
Richmond, VA (Zone 6b)
Composter Plant Identifier Organic Gardener Herbs Daylilies Sempervivums
Frogs and Toads Container Gardener Cat Lover Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! The WITWIT Badge Winter Sowing
Image
kylaluaz
Sep 16, 2014 5:26 AM CST
Thanks! And, well, it's a work in progress. Right now it definitely looks better and fuller, the containers do, and I have proceeded to start a border of rocks around the outer edge. I've placed other containers there on the straw (small ones) while I decide where to plant this and that.

I'm considering whether to plant around the base of the outer container sides now, or wait til spring.

Anyway, later today I'll get another picture in this comment thread; maybe the orange cosmos will have some open blossoms. Smiling
Name: Jo Ann Gentle
Pittsford NY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Heucheras Hellebores Container Gardener
Birds Region: New York Irises Garden Ideas: Master Level Avid Green Pages Reviewer Lilies
Image
ge1836
Sep 16, 2014 6:01 AM CST
I have lasagned gardens and what a relief to know it isnt necessary to break my back digging and turning sod.
I made the mistake of trying to plant in the ground a month after layering. It was horrible. Since then I learned to wait a season or start a area in the fall and come spring its ready to direct plant.
Nice hint about considering the lawn mower.
Name: Kyla
Richmond, VA (Zone 6b)
Composter Plant Identifier Organic Gardener Herbs Daylilies Sempervivums
Frogs and Toads Container Gardener Cat Lover Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! The WITWIT Badge Winter Sowing
Image
kylaluaz
Sep 16, 2014 6:05 AM CST
You are so right, I should wait, no doubt. And I would definitely wait if this were a regular lasagna bed -- but the edges of the containers are so tempting, LOL!

And I used to double-dig, so yes, it's wonderful to know I don't have to do that; applied patience and the lasagna method works as well or better. Green Grin!
Name: Jo Ann Gentle
Pittsford NY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Heucheras Hellebores Container Gardener
Birds Region: New York Irises Garden Ideas: Master Level Avid Green Pages Reviewer Lilies
Image
ge1836
Sep 16, 2014 6:44 AM CST
go for it
Name: Kyla
Richmond, VA (Zone 6b)
Composter Plant Identifier Organic Gardener Herbs Daylilies Sempervivums
Frogs and Toads Container Gardener Cat Lover Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! The WITWIT Badge Winter Sowing
Image
kylaluaz
Sep 16, 2014 6:59 AM CST
Rolling on the floor laughing
Name: Kyla
Richmond, VA (Zone 6b)
Composter Plant Identifier Organic Gardener Herbs Daylilies Sempervivums
Frogs and Toads Container Gardener Cat Lover Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! The WITWIT Badge Winter Sowing
Image
kylaluaz
Sep 16, 2014 11:13 AM CST
Update:

Here are some pictures from today.

Thumb of 2014-09-16/kylaluaz/093d39 Thumb of 2014-09-16/kylaluaz/cc125d

It will be quite a while before the actual bed itself shows much to look at, but the containers are satisfying, and I'm using the bed as a sort of staging area for what you see there. Also it serves as a bit of a hospital; in the gallon black nursery pot is a new daylily I lifted from another bed because its new growth kept getting stepped on or eaten -- so here I can protect it for a while before it goes back to the actual garden.

The next two show, first, the end where you can see I've begun the border of stones, and second, a view across the yard just for a bit of context and because, to me, it looks pleasing from that angle. Edit: Although it does bother me, that one pot sitting at an angle like that. I'll have to see if I can manage to level that one up a bit.

Thumb of 2014-09-16/kylaluaz/059852 Thumb of 2014-09-16/kylaluaz/2b7b3d

Thanks, everyone, for your interest, comments, thumbs, and acorns. Green Grin!

[Last edited by kylaluaz - Sep 16, 2014 11:15 AM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #700301 (7)
Name: Jo Ann Gentle
Pittsford NY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Heucheras Hellebores Container Gardener
Birds Region: New York Irises Garden Ideas: Master Level Avid Green Pages Reviewer Lilies
Image
ge1836
Sep 16, 2014 11:55 AM CST
Looking good. I like the idea of moving containers.
Surprisingly GREEN Pittsburgh (Zone 6a)
Rabbit Keeper Bee Lover Cat Lover Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Butterflies Hummingbirder
Dog Lover Birds Plant and/or Seed Trader Bulbs Echinacea Irises
Image
crittergarden
Sep 16, 2014 8:33 PM CST
Marvelous!
I'm a sister cardboard enthusiast!
Once I did it the first time, I was hooked.

I don't pre-wet my cardboard though.
Usually I put it down, weigh it down, and leave it for the rain to wet.
Mainly, I guess, because my desire to smother the grass/weeds is always ahead of my ability to acquire topsoil....

After a fairly thin layer of new topsoil, I have the good fortune to have bunny poo to scatter as the very top layer.
Toss in some worms gathered through the summer as I work in established beds, then relocated in fall, and we're off to the races!

I have never tried to do it quickly.
I lay the cardboard whenever, then top it in time to let the rain, snow, and worms do the work.
I'm almost finished doing my whole property from lawn to a perennial and food garden.
SHOW ME YOUR CRITTERS! I have a critter page over at Cubits. http://cubits.org/crittergarden/thread/view/73275/
Name: Kyla
Richmond, VA (Zone 6b)
Composter Plant Identifier Organic Gardener Herbs Daylilies Sempervivums
Frogs and Toads Container Gardener Cat Lover Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! The WITWIT Badge Winter Sowing
Image
kylaluaz
Sep 17, 2014 5:22 AM CST
Wonderful! Here, there is no guarantee of enough moisture to let that happen, though. My housemate has been in the habit of putting cardboard over weeds and unwanted growth and weighting it down and it just sits there looking unsightly.

Piling straw on top really helps the soil underneath, too. Or at least, that is my belief.

I envy your rabbit poo, though! And where do you keep the worms you collect until you're ready to redeploy them??
Surprisingly GREEN Pittsburgh (Zone 6a)
Rabbit Keeper Bee Lover Cat Lover Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Butterflies Hummingbirder
Dog Lover Birds Plant and/or Seed Trader Bulbs Echinacea Irises
Image
crittergarden
Sep 17, 2014 8:33 AM CST
I keep the worms in a bucket on the shady porch, to which I add seedless weeds I've pulled.

And I was thinking overnight that I forgot to mention my backyard doesn't get many viewers!
SHOW ME YOUR CRITTERS! I have a critter page over at Cubits. http://cubits.org/crittergarden/thread/view/73275/
Name: Kyla
Richmond, VA (Zone 6b)
Composter Plant Identifier Organic Gardener Herbs Daylilies Sempervivums
Frogs and Toads Container Gardener Cat Lover Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! The WITWIT Badge Winter Sowing
Image
kylaluaz
Sep 17, 2014 8:53 AM CST
Ah, good solution! I look forward to the day when I have enough worms here to do something like that. I just started gardening in this location this summer which is one reason I'm in a hurry. Smiling
Surprisingly GREEN Pittsburgh (Zone 6a)
Rabbit Keeper Bee Lover Cat Lover Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Butterflies Hummingbirder
Dog Lover Birds Plant and/or Seed Trader Bulbs Echinacea Irises
Image
crittergarden
Sep 17, 2014 9:05 AM CST
Cool.

I'd suggest you use your best soil (veg garden, probably) to gang up every worm you find now. NEXT season, you can take from there as you work, because they will have multiplied, and spread them around! That's kind of what I did when I first started here, but I wasn't so organized.

AND if you find a place to BUY worms, DO TELL, because @RickCorey might like to do the same. He's on the other coast from you, but maybe you can clue us in on the buzz words and stuff.
SHOW ME YOUR CRITTERS! I have a critter page over at Cubits. http://cubits.org/crittergarden/thread/view/73275/
Surprisingly GREEN Pittsburgh (Zone 6a)
Rabbit Keeper Bee Lover Cat Lover Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Butterflies Hummingbirder
Dog Lover Birds Plant and/or Seed Trader Bulbs Echinacea Irises
Image
crittergarden
Sep 17, 2014 9:07 AM CST
And P.S. The worms LOVE cardboard. The first place I put it turned into the first place I collected them from.
SHOW ME YOUR CRITTERS! I have a critter page over at Cubits. http://cubits.org/crittergarden/thread/view/73275/
Name: Kyla
Richmond, VA (Zone 6b)
Composter Plant Identifier Organic Gardener Herbs Daylilies Sempervivums
Frogs and Toads Container Gardener Cat Lover Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! The WITWIT Badge Winter Sowing
Image
kylaluaz
Sep 17, 2014 9:20 AM CST
But, don't you feel the worms are doing good work where they are? I encounter them from time to time and have left them where they are since I have no need to disturb them, really, and felt that improving the soil in general was the best way to encourage more worms.

To be honest, I am a bit puzzled that there are so few worms here! I may have to import some. I have never had to do that before. It's truly bizarre.
Surprisingly GREEN Pittsburgh (Zone 6a)
Rabbit Keeper Bee Lover Cat Lover Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Butterflies Hummingbirder
Dog Lover Birds Plant and/or Seed Trader Bulbs Echinacea Irises
Image
crittergarden
Sep 17, 2014 10:10 AM CST
Well, starting from scratch is easy, wormwise.
I had only a small area of leaf litter where there were any worms to speak of.
I found them when I planted crocus bulbs there.
One garden bed at a time was my process.
While they ARE doing good work where they are, my priority was whatever new bed I was building.
AND since I was adding nice organic matter to that new bed, they'd have lots to eat and they'd multiply.
Later, they've all gotten spread throughout again because I've now almost completed my bed areas.

Dig under whatever leaf litter or "pile" of organic matter you found when you first got there.
Mine were along the back fence, which abuts a dirt alley abandoned by the city decades ago and now full of trees.
SHOW ME YOUR CRITTERS! I have a critter page over at Cubits. http://cubits.org/crittergarden/thread/view/73275/
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
Image
RickCorey
Sep 17, 2014 6:24 PM CST
crittergarden said:AND since I was adding nice organic matter to that new bed, they'd have lots to eat and they'd multiply.


I agree: if you feed them, they will come.

The only place I saw worms in my yard was IN the compost heap. That was the only place that had enough organic matter to interest them or support them.

Name: Sharon Mc
Upstate SC (Zone 7b)
Peonies Region: South Carolina
Image
SRMc207
Sep 27, 2014 5:05 AM CST
Has anyone tried using the brown kraft paper that comes in large rolls at the big box home improvement stores as the bottom layer for lasagna gardening? I have some left over from a previous painting project and will try it in an area of lawn I want to convert to a shade bed.

I have tried cardboard in the past and was unhappy with the results. it did smother the grass, but didn't seem to let the ground underneath "breathe" well enuf to soften and improve the soil.
All gardeners live in beautiful places because they make them so.
Name: Kyla
Richmond, VA (Zone 6b)
Composter Plant Identifier Organic Gardener Herbs Daylilies Sempervivums
Frogs and Toads Container Gardener Cat Lover Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! The WITWIT Badge Winter Sowing
Image
kylaluaz
Sep 27, 2014 6:10 AM CST
Hi Sharon -- I save the brown paper that's used as packing material for this exact purpose, but instead of using it exclusively as the bottom layer, I use it like I do the newspaper, to patch the uncovered areas, corners, and edges.

I wonder about your cardboard concerns, though. IMO, the main key to successfully engaging the soil underneath the lasagna is what you use along with and on top of the cardboard. If you have enough soil/manure/compost/mulch -- and give it enough time -- it should work fine. (Though in more compacted spots it can take a while.)

In other words, yes to the kraft paper but I don't think the cardboard is the cause of the problem you refer to.

I just did a much larger lasagna project, and am scrambling to get enough stuff on top! And I did have to patch among the cardboard pieces with every bit of paper I could lay my hands on, to complete the shape.
Surprisingly GREEN Pittsburgh (Zone 6a)
Rabbit Keeper Bee Lover Cat Lover Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Butterflies Hummingbirder
Dog Lover Birds Plant and/or Seed Trader Bulbs Echinacea Irises
Image
crittergarden
Sep 27, 2014 6:25 AM CST
I think the cardboard is best to kill what's under it - paper "melts" too quickly.
Along with lots of nice, damp toppings!
WORMS, I think are what you need. I find the most worms under where I have used cardboard.
SHOW ME YOUR CRITTERS! I have a critter page over at Cubits. http://cubits.org/crittergarden/thread/view/73275/

« Garden.org Homepage
« Back to the top
« Forums List
« Lazy Gardener's Lasagna
You must first create a username and login before you can reply to this thread.

Today's site banner is by Paul2032 and is called "French Marigold"