A few days ago the sheet mulching process began in the northwest quadrant of the land. Sheet mulching is simply laying layers of organic materials which in the end builds a raised bed without the use of wood or a lot of compost/soil. Over time, the straw breaks down and the beds shrink, but not before turning the garden bed into black gold.

Sheet mulching is also known as lasagna gardening. No digging or double digging is necessary. The process is a bit time consuming but worth it. Each new growing season just add more compost and straw before planting. The reason it’s so time consuming is all the water that must be applied to the straw. Sheet mulching keeps moisture in the beds as well as keeping the temperature internally cool. In the high desert, I can’t tell you how quickly things dry out here.

Today we were able to get all the manure laid, which marks the area of each bed. All together in this quadrant, we have 860 square feet of growing space. I didn’t count all the walking paths in between though.

We ordered 30 bales of straw which should make all the raised beds over 6 inches high. I didn’t include the square feet of  three butterfly gardens that will also be located in that area, simply because they won’t be producing food…okay, well it will produce food for butterflies, bees and humming birds, but you get the point right?

When we get all the beds laid this weekend, I’ll post more photos.