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Sheet mulch - start over unusable soil

 
pollinator
Posts: 1376
Location: cool climate, Blue Mountains, Australia
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We have fill with very little topsoil. There is an area which was used as a driveway heavily compacted,
In theory sheet mulch uses the soil under the mulch, but there are far too many stones concrete pavers and what not that this would ever happen.
So I only have the pile I bring in. Let's assume a bed is 3 meters by 1.20. I would use cardboard several layers, maybe two wheelbarrows of woodchips, one or two bales of lucerne hay, two wheelbarrows of mushroom compost, maybe some wheelbarrows of dirt if I can organize this and say 6-8 sacks of horse manure relatively fresh.
For the first year I guess that would be enough, but what happens the next and the year thereafter?
I can't get lawn clippings anymore all lawn mowing companies here have mower mulchers now.
 
pollinator
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Paper shredders? Kitchen waste? I was just reading the NRDC Issue Paper "Wasted", which goes over all the statistics about what is thrown away in our modern disposable culture. It's a lot. Enough to mulch a lot of vegetable beds.

I suggest you invest in some type of shredding/mulching device and just collect it up. Don't be so finicky that the only thing that you can compost with is lawn clippings. If you can run over it with a bagging lawn mower and turn it into small shreds, it will make good mulch. Cardboard, brush, leaves in the fall, if it's organic, it will decompose. Look around you and see what sources of waste organic materials there are. You won't have to look far.
 
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