good resources for switching to no-till?all-seasons?
I've been reading the forum for the last month or so, there's so much good information in here! I have questions about all-season planting and about no-till gardening, I hope it is ok to post in this section. Let me know if not!
I have lived in my house for two years, and I have been gardening for exactly that long. I always lived in cities before and killed many houseplants but never tried to grow anything outdoors or for food.
I had a lot of mishaps last year (eating crocus bulbs that I thought were onions, yuk, losing a shovel in a pile of "compost", cutting my feet to shreds on hard barcmulch, planting a space two or three times because I forgot I planted it...and pulling up all my radishes because they seemed like weeds to me...among other things)
This year I found the forum! So the mishaps are...still fast and furious but less upsetting, since now I know I am not the only one.
I wanted to introduce myself and also ask a question, about no0till gardening. Last year I dug up turf to start my garden, added compost, manure, and stuff. I don't want to use any pesticides; I have a tiny dog and worry about him eating it or something. He does roam the garden.
I have a heap of compost-y type debris that I turn and water once in a while now. I've got a lot of perennials and some shrubs and things here and there. How could I go about switching over to no-till, with plants already in the ground? And what about the weeds?
I tried making a patch ready at one point by laying down newspaper very thick, but the thistles crawled under to the edges and came up there. also, pigweed, which did the same thing. Will straw mulch prevent them from growing so much? Will not tilling help? Where can I get information about setting this up?
I also have a lot of grass trying to take over, it pops up everywhere, I can't figure out how to get the lawn to be separate from the garden. I tried making an edge of that no-grow plastic sheeting held down with mulch, and put up a low fence. The fencing I used is just like little boards though and the grass invades...my neighbor mows the lawn areas in exchange for tomatoes (the one thing I have gotten tons of) but he won't mow right up to the edge. Then the grass gets very high, and I hate having to whack/trim it...is there a way to set up my edges to work better when he mows up to it? And to keep the damn grass out?
My garden is pretty weedy at the best of times. Is this ok? I don't really know enough (this being my first garden) to know when it's too much.
Also, I live in Oregon. I have no idea what I can grow in the fall or winter- I've only planted in summer so far, and let the garden kind of fall to waste all winter both years. I had some spinach come up this spring really early and a bunch of garlic i forgot about reappeared; this makes me think I could plant some things in the winter or fall here? But it gets so wet I don't know what would actually grow. Anyone have any advice for me about this?
Sorry if it's a lot of questions, I'm just excited to get some help finally! Thanks for all the information I have already gotten here, you guys are great.
some pictures from the garden:
Here is a link that might be useful: more pictures of my garden