The benefits of cover crops, composting, and planting in beds rather than rows are widely known, and they're dealt with in depth here. More controversial is Reich's injunction to rigorously preserve the natural layering of the soil--even when pulling up weeds, dead annuals, or old corn stalks. He makes a good case: tilling under weedy areas kills existing weeds in the short term, but turning over the dirt exposes more weed seeds to sunlight and air, and more of them will germinate; better to kill them first by mowing and self-composting or smothering them with mulch. In addition, Reich explains, water in broken-up, uniform soil tends to flow straight down; water in undisturbed soil travels more slowly, in different directions--down and sideways--thus more efficiently reaching roots. Installing a drip irrigation system further decreases water use (the book includes detailed instructions and formulas for calculating water-flow and timing) and, like many of Reich's recommendations, apparently works best when practiced in concert with his no-till, "top-down" method.
What isn't clear is how effective his system can be in an area that has been worked over by indifferent landscapers or that has already been tilled over and over for years. How long will it take for that plot's soil to resettle into something resembling its pretilled state? If my mom starts "weedless gardening" now, will she be wading through a forest of weeds or, worse, buying tasteless corn at the supermarket come August? --Liana Fredley
Really a informative, has a lot of how to......quite a few illustrations......you can tell he has a lot of experience in his time......good price for this information.....Published 1 month ago by Mr. R. HART
Very good book, but found it to be repetitious of other books. Newer books have more info in them. A good beginners book.Published 1 month ago by Delbert Mick Kyer
I am trying to incorporate his recommendations into our vegetable garden. Lots of good advicePublished 2 months ago by Martin Pomphrey
I read and reread this book and am planning a small flower garden, based on the principles, for this coming Spring.Published 3 months ago by Nancy A. McKean
This book is a good book, especially for gardeners starting new garden plots. It has a lot of good advice. Read morePublished 3 months ago by B. Goodlett
This is a very good book. My husband & I will be making our garden as weedless as possible this summer. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Croknitgirl