Create a no dig raised bed, compost on weeds, with tips on planting and see the growth, by Charles Dowding

Jeremie Litzler
  • Permaculture
  • Gardening
  • Charles Dowding
  • No Dig
  • Compost
  • Raised bed
About 2 min

Creating a raised bed with no dig is easy. Let's look how it is done.

A raised bed with a pile of compost with a wheel barrow in the background
Charles is pouring the compost in a raised bed. Credits: image taken from Charles Dowding’s vlog

Thanks to Charles Dowding for sharing his wisdom and knowledge! I wrote the following notes watching the video published on Charles Dowding's channel. You can watch it using this YouTube linkopen in new window.

Materials

You will need to:

  • two pieces of wood: 2.4 meters long, 5 cm thick and 15 cm tall.
  • eight screws in stainless steel of 80 mm in length.

Construction instructions

  1. Cut in half each piece of piece of wood
  2. Drill 2.5cm deep holes on one end only of the 1.2 m long wood pieces.

Charles is drilling some holes in the wood pieces
Charles is pre-drilling the holes for the screws. Credits: image taken from Charles Dowding's vlog

  1. Choose where you will want the bed to be.

4 sticks making a square in a lawn
The sticks below were used by Charles to mark the square where he wanted the bed to be. Credits: image taken from Charles Dowding's vlog

  1. Screw each piece of wood to each other using two screws peer corner.

Charles using a drill to set the screws in
If the level of the ground is not perfect, it is ok. You can level it with soil if you need. Credits: image taken from Charles Dowding's vlog

  1. Fill the bed with the least decomposed compost. It won't fill the bed completely. You will want to firm it up with a shovel.
  2. Apply the second layer with a more mature compost (10 month old for Charles's compost). Firm it up again.
  3. Finish with the most mature compost (16 month old in the vlog).
  4. Plant your seedlings
  5. Water the seedlings depending on the season and your climate.

A raised bed with some cabbage seedlings
The raised bed is done. The plants will grow well in this compost. Credits: image taken from Charles Dowding's vlog

A raised bed with small plants growing
Six days later, the radishes are out and the other vegetables are growing well. Credits: image taken from Charles Dowding's vlog

A raised bed with large vegetables ready to pick
Fifteen weeks later, some of the vegetables are ready to harvest. Credits: image taken from Charles Dowding's vlog

Tips about planting

For seedlings with long stems, plant them deep.

You can plant carrots and radishes in the same trench.