Lasagna Gardening How To – GardenFork


– Today on Garden Fork, lasagna
gardening in a raised bed. Watch it here. Hey everyone. Welcome to Garden Fork. Today, lasagna gardening. You’ve probably heard a lot about this, kind of layered compost method to make really healthy garden soil. We’re gonna show you
how to do it here today. We’re in urban Brooklyn,
New York, Brian’s backyard. We’ve been here before, we
built a rainwater collection system, and we also
built these raised beds, and we have videos about that, links are in the show notes right below here for that. But we’re finishing off right
now, but made a whole video about how to lasagna garden. Ready?
Here we go. So we have some scrap
cardboard, we’re gonna remove packing tape and stuff like
that off of it and then lay it in the bottom here. [Brian] -So we do this
so weeds don’t come up, at least initially. Kind of a lidar, but it’s
gonna, we want it to decay and we want it to turn to soil. – [Eric] We have the cardboard
in and now we’re gonna lay in some straw that we got. – You need four inches of straw. And what you’re doing, I believe, is you’re
gonna create a layer for, really a dry layer and for aeration. So it’s really important
is that it doesn’t become, what’s the term? Anerobic. You want it to always breathe so it decays and turns to soil and
doesn’t, doesn’t rot. – [Eric] So, for every
layer, we now wet this down. Alright, so now we’re
gonna add in some organic fertilizer on top of the hay here. – [Brian] Right. – [Eric] I don’t know if you
can see in the camera here, but there’s a definitely some nice steam coming off this pile. That’s great. This is going to go into
our lasagna garden then. Compost on top of our straw layer, which we wetted down. So, this is some produce that
we went to the local market and they were throwing
out and they gave to us. Some of it we set aside to
eat, and the rest we’re gonna put in our lasagna gardening. But you can go to your market
and ask for this stuff. This is finished compost that
we bought at the garden store. – So after every layer, wet it. So after you have your green, and compost, then you want to put another brown, dry. And here we have leaves
collected from the park. – [Eric] Layer of brown leaves. Neighbors were throwing these out so. You know what we did. – [Brian] Hot. It’s steamy in there. It does need to be mixed. I mean. – [Eric] More compost from
their little composter. Look at that steam coming off. Just a light dressing. A scattering. – [Brian] A pinch. – [Eric] This is come bagged compost that we got at the garden store. This looks great. I think it’s gonna be very cool. This could also be cut
grass from your lawn, just lay this in. And then again with the water. Aged manure, not fresh
manure, but aged manure. Maybe your neighbor has this? Or you can get it at the store. This is gonna be a great bed. This is gonna be really great. – [Brian] You think? – [Eric] Yeah. More of our backyard compost,
which is really well done, by the way Brian. – You’ve done a good job.
– Thanks so much. It’s got a nice heat to it. And then we’ll wet this down again. Alright, now a layer of soil. – Now this, you only need a layer of soil if you’re going to
plant seedlings into it. If you weren’t going to,
if you wanted just let it, do this in the fall and let it sit, you’d have amazing compost in the spring. But because we want to
plant now, in the spring, you need some good old soil to go into it. – If you were gonna do this lasagna garden in the fall, you didn’t necessarily have
to put the dirt back on. You could just let it
break down over the winter, and then plant right on top of it. – Alright, there you go,
big thanks to Brian here for helping out, lasagna gardening. We put out shows like this every week. Cooking, gardening, DIY, beekeeping, if you like what you see here
you can subscribe to our show. There’s a subscribe button here somewhere. Also, we put out a newsletter,
an email newsletter. You can sign up for that,
there’s a link in the show notes, and our other
gardening and raised bed videos, again, in the show notes below. So make it a great day, let
me know your thoughts here, in the comments below. Thanks! (mellow music)

98 thoughts on “Lasagna Gardening How To – GardenFork

  1. Hey Eric, Brian & Absent CO.  Interesting and informative video thank you for sharing it with us. Have a question for you though. I know that eventually the cardboard you put down first will breakdown and decay. But you seemed to put it in pretty thick and from wall to wall. Wont that be a barrier for worms to come up into the bed for this year? Especially seeing you put a lot of "chunky" compost down for a couple of your layers. Now that the compost is out of the composter you should really encourage the worms to your bed to break down the compost and make nice worm castings and aerate the bed as well. Let me know what you think
    Keep the info and updates growing our way :-{}

  2. Eric, great video!  This is the way I've been creating beds in my yard for the past few years.  I love it!  Great way to have a long-term raised bed.

  3. Thanks for sharing. He's going to have a lot of big fat juicy worms in no time. Maybe another update when he gets it planted? God Bless and take care.

  4. Eric,that was great! When did you start to plant in it? I saw the last video too, what a hoot! All I can say is you are a heck of a wonderful guy and handy too.

  5. You say add hay but it ought to be straw. The reason being is that hay still has seeds in it and may end up spouting . Keep up the good work.

  6. I think it should be mentioned that when you take items from neighbors like leaves and cut grass that you ask if they have used products like weed killers or bug killers, anything not organic on the trees or grass before you add it to your compost or garden beds.  My mom used to go around in the fall especially and collect peoples leaves for her compost, and she asked them every time.  Even though she was only getting leaves if they raked them up off of tainted grass she would not take them.  Pretty sure you have mentioned this before but I am new to your channel and thought it worth a comment for other newbies like me.

  7. One more step once plants are planted, or seeds are sprouted, you want to mulch around them, for two reasons, to discourage weeds, and to hold in moisture.   I would also carefully watch my plants for nitrogen shortage signs in a fresh lasagna garden and add coffee grounds or another source of nitrogen, blood meal, etc as needed.  It would be the same in a freshly made Back to Eden garden with freshly cut wood chips.

  8. leaves – good leaves like from maples should be a valuable item never thrown away;  so I take the neighbors from the curb.   Looks like a very  good mix here.

  9. Found this video interesting, Never thought of putting straw into my raised bed as a buffer.  I made my beds 2 yrs. ago with cardboard from Lowes and it worked great.  Just did not use the straw. I have two active compost piles going right now.  Might add some manure from a local horse farmer and straw to help them along a bit.  Will dry out the manure first.

  10. I always use leaves raked from previous year and lawn clippings in layering and also use newspaper as the bottom later when I lasagna.  I had never thought of using compost before it was complete for a layer, cool concept.

  11. Worst thing in the world to use is compost!–especially the kind you buy in a plastic bag.
    Best thing to use is Bokashi–fermented organic material.

  12. I started a spot in my garden last Fall for lasagna gardening, had to scrap the project because the really cold Winter just preserved most of the fresh compost that was supposed to breakdown. I have so many volunteer plants in that area now from the seeds in the compost 🙁 But, they all look super healthy and companion friendly.

  13. Thanks to the YouTube for promoting this Lasagna gardening, steps are easy to follow either they beginners or experienced one.

  14. how long does this take to decompose? how much does it shrink after decomposition? And..do you plant on that top layer of soil?

  15. I did this last season, in a similar fashion.
    I had the most outrageous bounty of courgettes, which loved the end product of the lasagna. Ditto for the potatoes. However, the tomatoes were a total fail: too much nutrient in the soil made them grow 1 meter every 2 weeks. By beginning of summer I had super tall tomato plants which turned out to have almost no root system – as if they didn't have to do any effort and stretch out to get the nutrients they needed? Under normal conditions this would have been no problem, but we had the warmest summer in history with record dry weather, and even though I watered them twice a day or more, the roots were too shallow and ended up being overheated. I mulched with straw, but straw absorbs moisture. Disaster crop. The courgettes and potatoes grew an enormous canopy of leaves which kept the lasagna-made soil moist even in the hottest days, so they didn't suffer.
    Thanks for sharing

  16. Great video….this is how I started my raised bed garden 10 years ago….and only had to add finished compost after the second year…as if breaks down,the soil level drops,that's why you have to add more of what ever you want every year….I brought a book called lasagna gardening…

  17. Perhaps a stupid question.. here it goes. When you lay down the cardboard and before you lay down the hay/straw would it be beneficial to wet down ..spray some water on the cardboard to get it started? They after the hay do the same. Kind of like the tomato sauce between the noodles kind of thing.  Not talking about drenching the paper just a lite sprinkle .Love your articles very helpful Reading them would be a bore seeing them in action is much more useful

  18. A question.. I have been looking into lasagna gardening. It seems to me to be almost identical to hot composting: adding alternate layers of green and brown. How does this not burn the plants? Is it because you add an occasional layer of soil (compost)?

  19. thanks for the video. looking to start my first raised bed and was turned off by cost of soil. if i start one this weekend should i let it sit for a while before covering with dirt and planting? what would be a good first crop? lettuce and spinach ?

  20. Some local folks were talking about this just the other day. One thing they mentioned & I thought I'd pass along: Try to use unprinted cardboard to the extent possible.

  21. Why buy fertilizer etc. for a compost. It should be all free no charge no cost involved other than the bin.

  22. What's the difference between aged and fresh manure? I just built a raised bed and sp far I put in cardboard and dried grass clippings. I plan to add composted cow manure the layer clippings and mature and top if off with topsoil. I have no compost ready, just started it yesterday. Will this work? I plan to plant onions and garlic this fall, so I want to get my bed ready now. And thanks for another great video.

  23. Brilliant straight forward video . Question if I plan to do this on a smaller scale can I use less layers? and also if I prepare the bed this autumn (fall) should I cover say with a porous sheet or cardboard? thanks UK new allotment owner

  24. Nice video and a lot of information! I would like to ask you some questions:
    1. Will that lasagna raised bed get lower over time?
    2. If it gets down, does it mean that the micro organisms consumed all the nutrients you just put there and will it get impossible for new plants to thrive in that bed?
    3. If I do the lasagna process in a pot for home planting will it work? I am thinking that there will not be microorganisms to do the work of decomposing. Thanks GardenFork!

  25. great idea! Lasagna gardening, no-till, chop-and-drop, and back-to-eden are basically horizontal composting using the different materials available to each gardener. Repeat the process in the Fall to feed the soil and to reduce weeding in the future.

  26. I'm going to ask our local grocer for their waste veg. I get coffee grounds from our local Waitrose.

  27. Any time line on this? I am asking because the vegetable scraps and dry leaves will need time to break down. So from the time the lasagna was done, up to when it is ready to be planted in – how long does that take?

  28. Nice job! Stuff should grow like crazy in that mix. But actually I think you could have done without all of the bagged materials e.g. finished compost, composted manure, and organic fertilizer, and what ever else you purchased to add. I've made compost piles with nearly the exact combo you used, and then decided to find out whether I could do it for no cash outlay. It works just as well, and can work even more quickly if you hit the right combo. Just vegetable clippings, grass clippings, leaves, wet cardboard (leave out in the rain to get soggy, then tear up into small pieces) and coffee grounds from the convenience store, Starbucks, or the diner, will cook up (or down) to a great, fertile compost, especially if you turn it regularly with a pitchfork. It's really not that much work, especially if you don't overwater. I know your concept is to just lay it in and let it do all the work itself. But turning with a fork is good exercise and can bring about amazingly quick breakdown. Thanks for sharing your experience, great video. Good luck with your garden!

  29. hi i am new here. just wondering for how long bed can be used ? or i have to repeat Lasagna layering every season.

  30. Nice job guys and looks like your making gold. The straw not only has the problem of containing seed most large hay producers also use a broadleaf control which can be a problem

  31. I had no idea there was a name for this! I've been doing something similar for a while, mainly because I don't have a spot in my yard to maintain a large compost pile. In the fall I'll rake stuff into a pile in the back, then in the spring it goes underneath the beds.

  32. Can u direct seed using cardboard mulching? If so how? Do you cut the cardboard ans seed inside or do you nust sow underneat first layer of soil?

  33. Great blend. Good info on hitting up farmers markets and supermarkets for their scraps. I’d add, tossing some mycelium from your neighborhood can only help. Should make for a good no till bed for years to come

  34. I'm in Florida and when I began my compost pile, it attracted fruit rats.
    I screamed like a woman, so I guess I'll be buying commercial compost in a bag.
    😆

  35. People get too carried away with composting. I just leave the leafs and roots from last year's crops on my garden and let that decompose and that's always been enough to grow next years crops

  36. Acer un montón de compost y una vez que este hecho rellenar la jardinera la naturaleza es más savia que las modas que seguís

  37. Is the cardboard chemically treated? Is the ink on the cardboard, and the stickers, toxic? Anything you add to the garden where you're growing food, you really need to be careful not to add things that could leech toxic chemicals into the soil, which may end up in the food you're eating.

  38. It seems silly to say but that was a very exciting video, I love the way you use all of the different components to make an excellent growing environment, bravo

  39. Lol… I have skipped everything and just used the soil from Mother Earth for 30 years and never had an issue. Just trying to save people some time.

  40. Adding chemical fertilizer may actually kill the microbes. The dirt should have everything it needs of the compost is aerobic, which it looks like it does from the steam.
    What I do not see is earth worms and egg shells.
    Make sure your bed has drainage at the bottom so it doesn't become moldy.

  41. Great ideas especially the supermarket visit. Want to make sure the wood timbers are not railroad ties soaked in creosote or some other toxic chemical. They kind of look like that might be the case.

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