In part two of the Raised Comfrey Bed series, we finish up the bed construction. The primary focus of this episode was to sheet mulch over the soil. Click this link if you missed Raised Comfrey Bed | Part 1.
So what is sheet mulching? Here’s a good definition from Wikipedia.
In permaculture, sheet mulching is an agricultural no-dig gardening technique that attempts to mimic natural forests’ processes. When deployed properly and in combination with other permacultural principles, it can generate healthy, productive, and low maintenance ecosystems.
The Wikipedia article mentioned above gets pretty technical with how to sheet mulch. While I’m sure there’s a “best” way to do it, you really can’t mess it up. In our raised comfrey bed, we started with a layer of leaves. Their purpose is to quickly break down and add organic material to the top of the soil. Next we placed down a layer of cardboard to block out the weeds that were transplanted to the bed with the soil. On top of the cardboard, we placed used coffee grinds that we picked up from a local coffee shop. Then we spread out and mixed up composted manure, a little potting mix and some bagged top soil (that I purchased for a buck because it was opened). To all of this we added a bag of blood meal. The blood meal will add nitrogen to the bed. As a side note. Comfrey can tolerate high levels of nitrogen in manure better than just about any plant. If you would like to learn more about comfrey, take a look at our article What is Comfrey.
Now that the raised bed is built, we need to dig up some old comfrey and take cuttings off of the roots. We will use these cuttings to establish new comfrey plants. Be sure to subscribe to our email list so you’ll be notified when part 3 is posted.