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A garden is only as good as the ground that it's planted in. Discussion forum for the many ways to improve the soil where we plant our gardens.

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Old April 13, 2015   #1
Cole_Robbie's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Illinois, zone 6
Posts: 8,407
Default I think I'm going no-till

I'm almost done hauling the black topsoil out of the cow field that I use to amend my high tunnel beds. I left last year's black plastic mulch down all winter. The soil is soft below, and full of worms and pill bugs. Now I have piled a ridge of fresh black dirt over each row; I included every worm I found with it. There were quite a few.

I think I'm going to just throw the drip line back down on top of the ridge, put plastic on top of that, and plant. It doesn't feel right to till up all the life that is going on in that dirt. The huge worms in there are never surviving the tiller tines.

As long as it doesn't get too rich and rot the plant before it takes off, I think it will be ok. Last year, by amending my soil, I had the best-tasting tomatoes I have ever grown. Maybe by not tilling I can do even better.

It will be a first for me, though. No one in my family has ever planted a garden without tilling.
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