Why cutting down on digging the garden can actually be good for soil

2BWXN9F Cardboard, weighed down with bricks, fitted over soil in bottom of fruit cage to suppress weeds.

SJ Images/Alamy

OF ALL my garden tools, the one I have used most must be my trusty spade, a lovely small and light one with a comfortable wooden handle. But recently, it has been getting less action because I have been stepping up on the “no-dig” approach to gardening.

All gardeners need to dig sometimes, of course, such as when making holes to put plants in or rooting out weeds. Traditional advice is that we should also turn over all the soil every autumn, to aerate it, improve drainage and mix in soil improvers like manure.

For the past few years, though, …

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