I am wondering if anyone has experimented with smaller amounts of good quality home-made compost on beds that have been previously prepared using one of the No Dig methods described on this web site? I know an annual application of around 5cm is recommended, but as my resources and time are quite limited I’d like to know if it is worth applying less (a thinner layer) over larger beds, or is it better to have smaller beds with a nice thick application? In an ideal world I’d be piling it on, but the goal is simply to provide myself with a good selection of quality food throughout the year without adding much to the Supermarket’s bank balance, (I currently have three 8m x 1.5m. beds and am considering one more).
I was in the same situation as you and the answer is yes you can use less. I used one pail per square yard which is about 1-2cm depth and it certainly improved growth vs no compost. Charles grows two crops a year so if you only grow one, I would think 2cm would be fine. Also, the more ripe the compost, the less depth is needed….
That is helpful – it may be I can create enough compost for next year, time will tell – I moved last year and so don’t know how much compost I can reasonably make throughout the season, but it is good to know there is a possibility of creating another bed – 4 is a nice round gardening number!