Real World Gardener No Dig Gardening is Design Elements

June 15th, 2014

REAL WORLD GARDENER Wed. 5pm 2RRR 88.5fm Sydney, streaming live at and Across Australia on the Community Radio Network.
The complete CRN edition of RWG is available on , just click on 2RRR to find this week’s edition. The new theme is sung by Harry Hughes from his album Songs of the Garden. You can hear samples of the album from the website


with landscape designer Louise McDaid

No dig gardening you might’ve even heard of and wondered what it was all about.
The fact is the idea has been around for almost 80 years!

No dig gardening is exactly that - gardening without digging the soil – perfect for when you have rocky soil, or soil with too many rocks to remove, or if you have an area that’s just rock with no soil at all – the idea is you create your own soil, mostly used for veggie growing

Instead of buying in truckloads of soil to plant in, you can create your own with a mix of different materials that will compost – start by collecting things like leaves, grass clippings, scraps from the kitchen like vegies and fruit, weeds, prunings that have been chopped up and even shredded paper – most of these are free things you can gather or get from around the neighbourhood – you can also use your own compost that you’ve made

No-dig gardening is a method used by some organic gardeners.
Nobody is really sure where the idea first started –possibly in when a Mr Masanobu Fukuoka started working on this idea in 1938, and began publishing it in the 1970s calling it "Do Nothing Farming."
Two pioneers of the method in the twentieth century included F. C. King, Head Gardener at Levens Hall, South Westmorland, in the Lake District of England, who wrote the book "Is Digging Necessary?" in 1946 and a gardener from Middlecliffe in the UK, A. Guest, who in 1948 published the book "Gardening Without Digging".

No-dig gardening was also promoted by Australian Esther Deans in the 1970s, and American gardener Ruth Stout advocated a "permanent" garden mulching technique in Gardening Without Work and no-dig methods in the 1950s and 1960s.

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