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Help! Newbie gardener and the tiller...

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
Has anyone used a tiller before? I figured it was pretty much a just do it type of thing, but my garden partners dh is wondering if there is anything that we need to know about it.

BTW thanks to Mothering and their boards. I found a great friend here with dd the same age as mine and we are going to co-op on gardening! That way one can watch the girls while the other works and vice versa. It is going to be so great!!!

Karen
post #2 of 3

A vot for double digging by hand

I haven't used a tiller but want to encourage you to think about hand digging your garden- I know it sounds awful but:

-you can do it with children present (Eli loved helping last summer- throwing rocks, playing in the dirt, using his bulldozer in the bed, etc. Where as a tiller is loud and dangerous and kids should be far away.

-it is better for the soil- it maintains the strata of the soil, doesn't involve petroleum products, etc.

-its easier to remove rocks etc. by hand than with a tiller.

-its good exercise

-narrow raised beds are easy to double dig and look fantastic when planted

-it is a quieter more peaceful approach to gardening

-and it isn't much harder than using a tiller.


I dug 8 beds by hand last summer with Eli and we had a blast. They look terrific and I have great pride in them. I'm not condemning the use of a tiller, just giving you another option to think about.

Good luck with your garden,
jeanie


Ps. to double dig- dig down one shovels length, remove dirt from a 2ftX2ft area. Use a pitchfork to loosen soil beneath. Move to next area, transferring dirt to the are you've already pitchforked. It sounds hard but you get the hang of it quick!
post #3 of 3
Hi there,

I'm Crowbaby's garden partner so I'm bumping this for visability. We are probaby going to go the tiller route this time, although we do appreciate the advantages of hand truning and may move to that after we have our main beds tilled. We just have no idea the hazards of using a tiller, or how deep to till.

Part of waht we will be tilling is on a fairly steep slope-is there a safer way to till a slope?

Anyone have experience with this?

Thanks, Crowbaby!
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