Gardening is often considered as one of the most therapeutic and rewarding experiences. The joy of seeing the harvest of your labor and hard work bloom into beautiful plants is unparalleled.
However, practicing gardening comes with a fair share of challenges as well. For instance, it is not always possible to water your plants at specific time intervals and removing the unnecessary weeds that may deprive the soil of essential nutrients.
The Back to Eden Gardening method is the perfect solution for those individuals who are passionate about gardening but do not find time to devote to the corresponding chores. Here is a detailed guide about this method and how you can practice it. Read on to learn more.
About the Method
Most plants that grow in their natural habitat do not require to be watered and weeded as frequently as compared to the plants growing in gardens. Aping this principle, the Back to Eden Gardening method promotes growing vegetables, fruits, and other herbs in the way they grow in nature.
Therefore, the primary requirement for practicing this method is to recreate the natural habitat of the intended plants in your garden. This can be achieved by adding layers of natural and raw material to form a mound that will act as a garden bed.
All plants will then grow naturally on this mound. The basic advantage of creating this extra layer of mound instead of directly planting the seeds is that it helps in retaining the moisture levels and prevents the growth of unnecessary weeds.
Back to Eden Gardening requires some readily available materials that can easily be found in your house or a gardening supply store. These materials, include newspapers, light cardboard sheets, compost (preferably homemade), and wooden chips.
Using these materials, you will create a three-layered barrier between the ground and the surface of planting the seeds of your choice. The first layer will be made up of newspapers and light cardboard sheets, thus providing support to the forthcoming layers.
Thereafter, the second layer will consist of an evenly distributed compost. It is recommended that you use homemade compost so that all necessary nutrients are retained. The final layer will be made by adding the wood chips to recreate the natural growing conditions.
Designing and Setting Up Your Garden
The first step to setting up a Back to Eden Garden is to design a rough placement as to how and where you want to plant your seeds. Make sure that you choose a spot that receives sufficient sunlight to sustain the growth of your plants.
Since the Back to Eden Gardening approach follows a layering process, therefore you do not have to worry about tilling the ground. You can directly start adding the layers on top of the natural grass or soiled surface.
Now start building ups the three different layers. Make sure that each layer is at least two to three inches thick with the last layer of wood chips being at least four to thick inches. Finally, top of the layers with homemade compost that will act as the soil for the germination of the seeds.
Challenges That You May Encounter
While the Back to Eden Gardening method is easier and involves lesser chores as compared to its traditional counterpart, it comes with a few challenges that you would have to keep in consideration.
The primary challenge that you might encounter is finding the right kind of wood chips to add in your layers. For this, you would want to look for chips that are obtained from thin branches that contain leaves. Shredded shrubs provide the best wood chips.
Another common challenge that you may face is the germination of the seeds. Since the final layer consists of wood chips, therefore gardeners often make the mistake of not planting the seeds deep enough into the compost layer.
You can plant your seeds and then add a layer of wood chips to prevent this from happening.
The Bottom Line
Back to Eden Gardening is a convenient alternative for those individuals who are avidly interested in gardening but cannot find the time to pursue their hobby. Adopting this method ensures that the time devotion that is required for traditional gardening is significantly reduced.
In case you want to learn more about this novel method, we recommend that you watch Back to Eden, a documentary that sheds more light on this subject.