Strong and long lasting

Topping up a garden bed

I have recently harvested the cucumbers and peas from one of my raised beds and now have space to undertake some new planting. But before I do, I need to prepare the bed because even though the soil is full of life, it has broken down and sunk quite a lot and needs a top-up for the new season's autumn planting.
The main things to keep in mind when topping up the bed are to
-    Layer, layer, layer.
-    Water each layer as you build it up until the water penetrates, not just pools-up on the top.
Other than that, it is just a simple matter of layering in this order -
Cocoa peat, which holds the moister as well as letting the air flow 
Planting mix 
Straw – pea or bean straw is good. If you can bear the smell, put it in a wheelbarrow and soak in a mixture of water and liquid fertiliser and let it sit for as long as you can, then put it on the top to protect all the life that is living below it. If you can’t bear the smell, just layer the straw as it comes and water in.
And now you are ready to plant.
If you have ground beds, you can do exactly the same, just use thinner layers.
Sounds delicious – if you are a plant, bug or wriggle worm that is.