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By Jmason

Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom Gb

I want to make a small veg garden at the back area of my lawn, I have covered the area with an old carpett to kill the grass Question how long do i need to keep covered before i can dig it.



What a wonderful site, lots of thing to up date you with, the food ideas are good I have often used some of your food ideas for out meals. keep up the good work
Jocelyne mason -Burwell.

8 Jun, 2012


That will be quite a while before the grass dies off.
I would have thought a much quicker solution was to remove the turves. double dig the area, burying the turves upside down at the bottom of each trench as you go. This will not only aid moisture retention at the base to start with, but also feed the soil below. The turves if buried deep enough a good spades depth will die. Just ensure there are no dandelion roots or small dock plants in the soil as you turn them.

8 Jun, 2012


Depends whether it is just grass or a number of perennial weeds too! I once covered a whole area with black plastic for TWO years, and then uncovered it, only to find the weed (the dreaded horse tail) coming back!
I would use the square foot method in your situation, making one or more four foot squares with timber surrounds. To get going quickly, cover the ground with cardboard and then fill it up with as much good soil and compost as you can get your hands on. Plant into this, fairly sturdy plants for the first year, such as courgettes, tomatoes, or cabbages, turnips and so on.
Kept well watered, the cardboard rots slowly and the plant roots penetrate into the ground.
At the end of the season the ground should be ready to dig more easily ready to carry on next year.
Do read Mel Bartholomew's book on Square Foot Gardening. I think it's a wonderful solution for small areas.

8 Jun, 2012


I'm with Bertiefox regarding Mel Bartholomew's 'square foot' gardening methods. In fact, I've just uploaded a photo of our small raised veg bed if you'd like to take a peek. :)

8 Jun, 2012


I like 2ndhand's idea, when making new beds from lawn I place the turfs upside down in a pile and let them rot down. I double dig adding lots of soil improvers as I go

8 Jun, 2012


every year when I edge the lawn I manage to collect about a ton of grass and soil, this gets stacked in crates, covered in black plastic and left to turn into loam. I do go down the cardboard soil and manure route when creating veg beds up the plottie, but in the garden the turves get buried, or in one case of widening a border, I created Humph.

9 Jun, 2012

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