Cultivation 101: Single Digging to Repair Soil

Single digging is so called because it involves turning over the soil to the depth of a single spade blade.

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Step 1: Create a Trench

Single Digging

Single Digging

Single digging is so called because it involves turning over the soil to the depth of a single spade blade.

©2008, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2008, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Start by digging out the soil from the first strip. Work from the front to the back of the strip, and create a trench one spade or “spit” deep and one spade wide. Place the excavated soil on the surface to one side of the trench.

Step 2: Dig Second Strip

Trench Treatment

Trench Treatment

Well-rotted manure or garden compost is best for filling the trench.

©2008, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2008, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Add organic matter, such as well-rotted manure or garden compost, to the bottom of the trench. Then dig out the second strip as in step 1, but place the soil into the first trench, so that it covers the organic matter that has already been added.

Step 3: Add Organic Matter

Add Organic Matter

Add Organic Matter

For a single dig, add organic matter to the second trench, using a fork to break it up.

©2008, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2008, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Add some more organic matter to the second trench, using a fork to break it up if necessary. Fill in this second trench using the soil dug out from the first. You can dig larger plots in the same way, dividing them up into several strips.

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