Three strip trial 2014-2018

This one is ongoing. It morphed into the current form in 2014, so 2018 will be fifth year of this version.

See more on this and other videos on my You Tube channel.

Also within this trial are some explorations of no rotation (link to video made 09/16). The beans are fifth year same place, leeks fourth year, potatoes + broad beans 3rd or fourth year.

The three strips are 2 metres wide, 9 metres long; each strip comprises six small beds.

  • STRIP 1 soil loosened by forking 10-11in/25-27cm depth each autumn/early winter without inversion, then 2in/5cm bought* compost on the surface. A different method to the other trial.
  • STRIP 2 no dig, was mulched initially with polythene 2013, and 2in bought* compost is spread on the beds each winter.
  • STRIP 3 no dig, 2in composted cow manure on the surface each winter; in 2017 this manure was finer and older when applied.

  *bought compost was green waste for 2014-15, mushroom 2016, half each for 2017 & 2018


See below for four years’ graphics and results.

4.4.18: The main weeding is of fathen from the cow compost on strip 3. By APril we had already hoed twice and it was too wet to hoe again.

On 12th January I planted December-sown broad beans, Aquadulce, in the same beds again. Then we made more plantings on 2nd April of lettuce and spinach, in the same beds as 2017. Meanwhile the salad under mesh is cropping well, mostly mustards, except for pest damage on leaves in strip 3. Results of the salad beds so far are strip 1 2.71kg, strip 2 3.33kg and strip 3 2.07kg of saleable leaves.



Four year’s results from the three strip trial