July 20, 2009

Layer upon layer upon layer

On Saturday we finally started making our lasagna garden. First we had to make the inevitable trip to Bunnings to scope out the options for materials. We had a feeling hardwood would be too expensive, and a pain to cut into the right shape since the longest side of the bed is curved. And we were right . In the end we settled for sturdy six-inch plastic lawn edging tape, surrounded by a wire fence to keep out the cats who've decided our front garden is the local kitten pissoir.

We cleared the area, replanting the few daisy bushes, nasturtiums and violets that we wanted to keep and cutting down the two trees that were struggling to survive (and were completely inappropriate for a tiny suburban front yard - what were the last owners thinking?!).

Of course, since we're very much trying to build this garden on the cheap, luxuries like mulch and soil were beyond the budget. We had no trouble covering the area with old newspapers, but when we got to the rest of the 'brown' layer we substituted peat for the square foot of compost we've managed to make since getting the compost bin in january and some dried leaves from previous pruning days. And the 'green' layer was comprised of the stuff from the top of the compost bin that hadn't yet rotted down and the lawn clipping from our tiny patch of grass.

So far the lasagna layers are only about 1 inch deep. We need at least 6 decent inches before we plant in spring, so there's still a lot to do, but it's a start.

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