You must use old sushi wrappers and spicy mustard......no, really I am a patio gardener and have had great success with loading the bottom of my containers with rolled Washington Post with an internal core of any old compost I can make in small styro foam containrs. I have little available deadwood ( I live in the middle of a 700 unit apartment complex) but lots of rolled newspaper. I usually soak dry paperrolls with water and then line the bottom of my 30 gallon tubs with them, maybe two layers. After reading about a Texan who make her keyhole gardens with about 3 feet of mashed cardboard boxes I decided to try some cardboard in there too. Several have claimed the corrugations add air space for lots of critters. I also used 3 wet paper rolls in the bottoms of disc shaped planters in front of the apartment. They seem to retain water pretty well.
I have one tub where I tried to make the ideal 45 degree angle pile but it squished down. Its growing buckwheat, mung, long beans and a few flowers in 1.5 inches of soil atop paper rolls in 4 inch dept of tube. There is another deeper tub thats doing well. Next attempt is an 8inch deep translucent tub, will give it a green mulch layer of rye and whatever left over dated seed packets I have. I will try to give it 2" of old potting soil pulled from global buckets and more of the home grown compost. My compost is usually the leaf refuse along side the local sidewalks and any green colored yard clippings I can find. The leaf refuse is pre shredded as opposed to fall leaves. The mixture is in styro foam coolers ( Omhha Steak style) and kicks off pretty quick. Occasionally the black fly larva get into my green stuff piles. Thats stuff really composts quickly. Mushroom, horse manure etc. are not available in da big city but things are chuggin' along with what I found. And its in my price range. my patio garden gets no rain directly and I haul water from the bathroom (shower water) for earthbox style planters. I like my punk hugelbeds as they seem to last longer without watering. whole garden area is 4' by 25' and all containers (earthbox style or global bucket). Will do a youtube when I have more stuff growing in the beds. Its another approach to the low water problem.
Debbies Clifton TX Keyholes are pretty nice, hope to visit in person one day, FB will do for now.
I bet you would have even better plant growth if you pour or soak those rolled newspapers in urine. By burying them in your tubs of mix, they will be sequestered out of the reach of noses, and the roots can access the nutrients at will. You can also dilute urine four or five to one in water and water the plants directly with it. This will make a big difference...
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