to dig or not to dig that is the question

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rowlandwells

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to dig or not to dig that is the question
« on: November 27, 2017, 18:58 »
 because of other commitments I haven't had time to put my manure on the allotments or plough the ground as I usually do before winter sets in and I still need to dig over my razed beds to

unfortunately the allotment ground gets very wet this time of the year and tractor struggles to plough the ground I am mindful that the ground mite not  cultivate as well with spring ploughing as a winter dig and I will need to spread the manure prior to ploughing in spring to  :unsure:

does anyone spring dig and do you find any problems doing this because as I said I usually winter plough or dig


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greenjay

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Re: to dig or not to dig that is the question
« Reply #1 on: November 27, 2017, 19:07 »
I dig as little as possible.
rising spud is the most I do.
put cardboard down cover with muck or compost.
much easier in the spring imo

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New shoot

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Re: to dig or not to dig that is the question
« Reply #2 on: November 27, 2017, 19:35 »
If the ground is wet and heavy, digging does more harm than good imo.  I've not finished digging, but I've had other years like this and finishing the job in the spring has always seemed fine.

If you spread manure now, it will weather over the winter and the worms will drag a lot in, then you can dig the remainder in over spring.  Perhaps not as good as digging it in over autumn, but better than no manure at all.  I would avoid areas where you want to sow seed direct or grow roots like carrots and parsnips, but I expect you do that anyway with your autumn routine  :)

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Dev

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Re: to dig or not to dig that is the question
« Reply #3 on: November 27, 2017, 19:51 »
Have you considered no-dig? Have a look at Charles Dowding's website. He seems to get spectacular results without digging and he shows the results of a number of years comparison between dig and no-dig beds. He's certainly converted me - and my bad back agrees!

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Aled

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Re: to dig or not to dig that is the question
« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2017, 09:13 »
rowlandwells, I'm in exactly the same position, this is very relevant for me this year as well.
Sounds like this year will be my first year of no autumn dig!
Nice comments all
Cheers
Aled

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ARPoet

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Re: to dig or not to dig that is the question
« Reply #5 on: November 28, 2017, 10:22 »
I gave up digging about 3 years ago. I now use manure, cardboard and covered in woodchips when a bed come empty. Let the worms do your work for you.
Roger.

Its Grand Being Daft

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Growster...

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Re: to dig or not to dig that is the question
« Reply #6 on: November 28, 2017, 11:02 »
I hope to finish spreading amnure over the dead weeds again. Digging takes up a lot of time, and this year, I found that in the spring, a quick run-down with a tiller soon turned it all up, and the spuds went in a trench as easy as that!

The drier it gets, the easier the tiller works too, and anyway, I wouldn't be planting anything out when it's too cold or wet!

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Goosegirl

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Re: to dig or not to dig that is the question
« Reply #7 on: November 28, 2017, 14:55 »
I put mushroom compost on my raised beds and, as said, let nature take its course over winter, plus it keeps any stalwart weeds coming up.
"Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend." Martin Luther King.

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rowlandwells

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Re: to dig or not to dig that is the question
« Reply #8 on: November 28, 2017, 18:02 »
I was concerned that I hadn't done my winter digging or ploughing  before winter set in  but after reading your replies I feel more confident with my spring cultivation

I mite brave the weather and spread my manure when I've finished my other jobs  :lol:

thanks all

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ilan

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Re: to dig or not to dig that is the question
« Reply #9 on: November 30, 2017, 19:31 »
Now with a heavy soil I like to dig it over during the winter I think that turning it over gets the frost at all the bugs and weed roots  and the soil seems to break down easier , then cover with some poly sheeting in spring to get the warmth back into the soil  and a quick hoe off to  clear any weeds that have sprouted and job done  :)
This is the first age that has ever paid much attention to the future which is ironic since we may not have one !(Arthur c Clarke)

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Aled

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Re: to dig or not to dig that is the question
« Reply #10 on: December 01, 2017, 09:53 »
Forgot to mention that I have already dug most of my plot, I had one bit left, which was still producing late carrots until a couple of weeks ago. So all being well I hope to close most of the garden off this weekend, compost and then cover with cardboard. I do still have some parsnips growing.
Cheers
Aled 

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JMCKG

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Re: to dig or not to dig that is the question
« Reply #11 on: December 02, 2017, 16:51 »
Have you considered no-dig? Have a look at Charles Dowding's website. He seems to get spectacular results without digging and he shows the results of a number of years comparison between dig and no-dig beds. He's certainly converted me - and my bad back agrees!

Agree 100%. Went no dig 4 years ago, great results. Why dig when you do not have to ? Dowding is the man.

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AlaninCarlisle

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Re: to dig or not to dig that is the question
« Reply #12 on: December 02, 2017, 17:57 »
I'm 75 and feel that digging is vital for my own well being. I just enjoy the exercise on cold late autumn days. It also makes the tilling easier come spring. When I can no longer dig my plots, doubtless I'll find a rational argument for "no-dig", but until then my pleasure and self-satisfaction comes first  :D

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Growster...

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Re: to dig or not to dig that is the question
« Reply #13 on: December 02, 2017, 18:21 »
I'm 75 and feel that digging is vital for my own well being. I just enjoy the exercise on cold late autumn days. It also makes the tilling easier come spring. When I can no longer dig my plots, doubtless I'll find a rational argument for "no-dig", but until then my pleasure and self-satisfaction comes first  :D

Good post, Alan; I totally agree about the timescale...

I've got caught up with so much to do at home at the moment, digging is not a priority, but indeed it should be really.

But it's sooooo cold at the moment, the thought of wielding a Terrex about just doesn't compete with making some shelves, mending neighbour's greenhouse, making wine, etc etc etc...

And there's a huge pile of manure to distribute as well!

Fabulous decade - the Seventies!

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mumofstig

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Re: to dig or not to dig that is the question
« Reply #14 on: December 02, 2017, 18:28 »
My back problem makes wheel-barrowing large quantities of manure to my plot, for the no dig system - difficult - but I can still dig/fork over; so that's what I do.
I use the fairly small amount of compost from my 4 Daleks plus some other organic fertilisers instead of using bulky manure.

People simply have to do what works for them  :)
Lesley
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I'm not good, I'm not bad, I'm just me - and sometimes I have to apologise for that.



 

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