Have you ever heard of lasagna gardening? It has nothing to do with Italian food. It’s a way to prep garden beds by layering organic matter, it’s also known as sheet composting. The layers will “cook” and break down leaving you with rich garden soil. This method of gardening is easy. No digging, to tilling, no hard work at all really. Just gather your supplies and start layering.
I’m going to share my take on lasagna gardening. I wanted to create a small garden bed for growing herbs. I can’t be bothered to dig up grass and I don’t have a tiller break up the soil so lasagna gardening seems like the perfect solution.
Step One: Create a perimeter
I used rocks I had from around the yard. They were heavy. Ohhh my back hurt the next day! You could use rocks, bricks, a wood frame, old bottles- anything to make a border.
Step two: Layer newspaper on the grass and soak it with water
The newspaper will help to suffocate the grass and weeds and prevent them from growing up into the new soil you are going to put on top of it. You can also use cardboard but it will take longer to break down.
Step 3: Layer organic matter
Create layers with compost, old grass clippings, peat moss, leaves and well rotted manure. I mostly used grass clippings, compost and potting soil because that’s what I had on hand. Spray water on each of the layers so that everything is nice and moist.
Step 4: Cover with plastic
I used garbage bags to cover everything and weighed it down with rocks. The plastic will help trap heat and make all your layers break down faster.
Step 5: Wait it out
You are essentially letting all your lasagna layers compost and break down into rich soil to plant your plants. It can take weeks or months for everything to break down depending on the size of your garden and what you used in your layers. Let your garden “cook” and check every once and a while to see how things are going. Once the soil is nice and composted you can get things growing!
This method seems like it would work best in the fall so your garden has all winter to break down. By spring your garden beds will be ready for planting.
I’ll update you in a few weeks to show my progress. Have you ever tried lasagna gardening? Share your tips in the comments.