Create a hillbed in the permaculture garden

Create a hillbed in the permaculture garden

Why create a hillbed?

A hill bed consists of different layers of organic material that accumulates in the garden. The utilization of everything that the garden produces is one of the basic principles of permaculture and helps to achieve sustainable cultivation. Thanks to the organic material, which gradually rots, the hillbed contains numerous nutrients that provide the fruit and vegetables grown on it with nutrients all year round and thus make fertilization completely superfluous. In addition, the decomposition of the materials generates heat, which has a beneficial effect on the growth of the cultivated plants and also enables early cultivation. This means that vegetables and fruits can be harvested up to three weeks earlier. Another advantage is that due to the hill shape, the cultivation area is slightly larger,so you can grow more fruits and vegetables in a smaller space.

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Planning the hill bed: location and size

Hill beds are usually laid out oblong and should not be wider than 1.50 meters so that the vegetables growing on them can be easily reached. The ideal length is four meters, but you can make your hill bed longer or shorter. It is important that you observe the given conditions on site. Fruit and vegetables almost always grow better in the sun. So don't create your hill bed on the north side of your house, but look for a sunny location. In addition, it should point from south to north as far as possible, so that all plants receive the same amount of sun.

When will the hill bed be created?

The best time to create a hillbed in the permaculture garden is in autumn. The layers can then settle over the winter and you can start growing straight away in the spring.

Building a hill bed

A hill bed is divided into several separate layers. What exactly you are processing in your hillbed, the order in which you do it and how thick each layer is depends entirely on what is available to you. Usually used:

  • Branches, brushwood and chopped up
  • mown grass
  • Leaves and garden waste
  • Manure and coarse compost
  • Fine compost and topsoil
  • Clay

A hill bed should remain in use for five years, so thicker branches that only rot after a year or two can be used.

In this video you can see how to create your hillbed step by step: