Even an untrained eye could tell you the photo above is, well, horrid. For many reasons, which I will not be going into. What it does capture is the feeling and look of a spare garden box I had in June. Last year this garden bed held a few flowers and lots of peppers. This year I had no peppers. What I did have were flowers that looked very ragady and forelorn. Most of the other flowers had sold on the road side stand. Due to lack of watering or other issues, these had not. Instead of adding them to the compost pile, I filled this garden box with them. My goal was to keep out weeds. Instead, this is what I got …
No added fertilizers, no weeding (though there are a few in there), no watering. I planted and let them be. So what happened? Over the winter I had added at lease one 5-gallon bucket of coffee grounds and filters from a local restaurant. That was it. Coffee grounds and filters are a great soil additive, helping with soil structure, retention of moisture, and add roughage for our worms. While not everyone agrees with adding so many grounds at once, it has worked out for me. Of course, these were on top of wood chips. I also have a tendency to empty our ashes from the fire pit into the garden beds.
While we have a compost pile, I find myself semi-lasagna gardening a lot of time. I think of it as either being lazy or efficient, composting in place and saving time in the spring.
The moral of the story: Getting good results in your garden does not have to be hard and labor intensive. With the right environment, even the worst looking plants can thrive.
P.S. While taking the last pictures I found a stowaway from last year – a self seeded pepper plant. And to keep it real, I left the weed in the garden bed till after I took the picture. Your welcome. 😉