welcome to the organic green doctor blog

i am a family physician who was diagnosed with
early mild cognitive impairment(mci) amnestic type on december 21, 2010
this is a precursor to alzheimers disease
because of this diagnosis i have opted to stop practicing medicine
this blog will be about my journey with this disease
please feel free to follow me along this path
i will continue blogging on organic gardening, green living,
solar power, rainwater collection, and healthy living
i will blog on these plus other things noted to be interesting

Thursday, October 15, 2020

garden news-togd method of making garden soil


there is a method of making soil called the lasagna method and the keyhole garden method
my method of making garden soil is sort of a combo of the two methods
the picture above is one i did at the country n 
this is a large water trough that had rusted out its bottom
it was about 8 ft in diameter and about 3 ft in height
i converted it to a keyhole garden using the keyhole garden method linked above from deb tolman
in this picture is my red potatoes growing
it had a central composter that was 1 ft in diameter and was 4 ft tall
i had a good crop of potatoes that year

i made the soil similar to my togd method described below that i recently used at the community garden where i garden to fill up a donated raised bed

the bucket brigade volunteers made 2  3 ft x 10 ft raised bed from oak pews from a church that was donated to them
yes it was heavy to lift

the plan was to make our own soil to fill up that large garden bed in one of them
i talked them into letting me use the togd method that i used at the country n to make my soil 
i will admit that sometimes there i simply bought soil that was already ready to plant in 
the austin area had several good sources for good organic garden soil that was quite rich 
my guess is the togd method or lasagna method or keyhole garden method produces a soil that is as good if not better than those sold from the garden centers

i had helping me that day two helpers
a hardworking 8th grader who was using this as a science paper topic he had to do 
his mom 

we accumulated these materials

dirt from around the garden 

cardboard and newspapers
we soaked them in water in these barrels 
yes i was found raiding the recycle bins at our condo for several days for these products
cardboard and newspapers equal carbon 
i am sure i will get one of those hoa condo letters reprimanding me for digging through the dumpsters
or maybe they just thought it was a homeless person digging through the trash

browns which are carbon sources
we used material harvested from the garden that were run through a wood chipper
we also got wheelbarrows of mulch

greens which are nitrogen sources
we used green materials from the garden 
one large batch was christmas lima bean vines that were growing up a 10 foot tee pee
there were clippings from trees shrubs some grasses some flowers some citrus leaves all green

fertilizers another nitrogen source
we used this organic fertilizer that also has fungi and bacteria in it
we also used a mixture of fish emulsion plus seaweed or kelp plus molasses
the molasses provides a sugar source for the living organisms in the soil
these living organisms ie bacteria and fungi make the plants grow better
you cant grow veggies well in dead soil

this compost we make here in the garden in 4 ft square bins from donated food scraps and chipped up material from the garden 
the final product is rich dark and usually full of worms

first we lined the bed with wet cardboard

second we added a layer of dirt

third we added a layer of browns

fourth we added a layer of greens

fifth we added a layer of compost

sixth we added the organic fertilizer and a good soaking of the fish emulsion seaweed molasses
seventh we soaked this all in well with our water hose

eighth we covered this with a layer of wet newspaper

ninth we repeated this over and over again until we reached a few inches below the top of the garden bed frame
the last thing we added to this was a half a bucket of worms and worm compost from my worm 5 gallon composters from my garden 
we added probably a thousand worms
they will love all that cardboard and newspaper and plant material
one measure of a good soil is if you find worms in it

tenth we covered this all up with a couple of layers of good wet cardboard 

we will let this sit for a couple of days then we will add our final layer
a mixture of good potting soil mixed well with compost
this will be soaked well with the fish emulsion seaweed molasses mixture
this will be covered back up with the cardboard to help hold in moisture
when our seedlings are ready to plant we just take off the cardboard and plant them into the richest soil one can use in your garden

this makes a fluffy rich black soil with a lot of airspaces 
when we finished you could push on the soil and it felt like a soft mattress

i am predicting a lot of veggies will be grown in this bed 

if you were a vegetable woulnt you love this soil

that my friends is the togd method of garden soil production 

the organicgreen doctor 

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