Brassicas without digging or weeding

July 2017 – and just time to plant out some kale seedlings that have been grown in pots.

The method below does not need digging or weeding in the conventional way and leaves a beautiful soil when the crop is harvested. Below is the patch they are being planted in. There had been broad beans there a week before. The beans were harvested and the bean stalks added to the compost heap. The soil has been hoed but no need to dig.


Let’s see the plants and other requirements…


The soil is very dry, hence the watering can to water the plants in. Slug pellets may be needed if wet. The newspaper and cardboard are the “weedkiller”. They will block out the light between the kale plants and prevent any weeds growing.DSC05481

The wood-chips are spread on top of the newspaper or card as a mulch. this stops the paper blowing away and together they will slowly rot and improve the soil. Once the kale is harvested it will have a lovely layer of composted mulch on the top. A quick use of a rake on this compost and the soil will be ready to plant the next crop, so no digging needed then either.


The row is planted, but what are the plastic bottles for? A clue: – they are full of water…


Netting is needed to protect brassicas from pigeons and rabbits. The water-filled bottles are a safe way of securing the netting.

Here are some broccoli and kale plants I did a month earlier. There are no weeds because of the mulch. No need to water either. Brassicas need a firm soil, so no need to dig. Voila!