Keyhole Gardening Construction
Keyhole gardens were first constructed in the 1990s for families in Africa that were poor and needing ways to successfully grow food crops. These gardens were said to be constructed or positioned near the kitchen.
The appearance of the garden was a two-meter-wide circular rise bed with a compost pile in the center with a key shape pathway. Uncooked vegetable scraps, manure, and water were placed in the center basket of this garden type.
These gardens allowed for easy access from the insides or from the edges, the advantage of the keyhole garden is that you can continue to add compost throughout the season, this continually adding of compost will decompose ensuring a constant supply of nutrients.
Since then keyhole gardens have become so popular and are constructed on a wider scale in many home gardens. In this article, we will be looking at how to construct such gardens along with taking advantage of the many benefits this garden type offer.
How to build a keyhole garden?
Let’s get started
1. When constructing a keyhole garden look for an area that’s flat and leveled that drains well or has good water drainage.
2. Remember keyhole gardens have a circular form so create a pattern according to this form as in the illustration above or imagine an apple pie with a slice missing.
3. Using this circular shape pattern as a guide, begin to build your keyhole garden with stones or concrete bricks. This structure should be three feet in height and six feet in diameter.
4. With wire mesh create a circular basket, this basket will act as a compost basket which should be one foot in diameter and four feet in height. Place the basket in the center of the circle.
5. Line the inside of the wall with carboards, the use of cardboards will help to retain the loose soil so it doesn’t filter through. This cardboard will also help with water drainage.
6. Fill the area which will be used for growing your crops with soil, a soil that is weed-free has good drainage but will hold the right amount of moisture is ideal.
7. Once the soil is placed begin to level the soil to slope down and away from the basket so that the water runs to the edges of the outside.
8. Place about four inches of rocks inside of the basket, these rocks will help speed up the decomposition process with the circulation of air-flow and also drainage.
9. Now fill the compost basket with leaves, disease-free grass clippings, kitchen waste such as scraps of vegetables, fruits, and other organic material. Don’t add scraps of meat or any other animal product including cat and dog feces.
10. Begin to plant your crops to reap a good harvest.
Maintaining your keyhole garden
1. As the compost decomposes continue adding kitchen scraps. This adding of scarps will ensure a constant supply of nutrients to plants as it breaks down.
2. Properly maintain your garden by regularly checking to see if any repairs need to be done.
3. When watering your keyhole garden, water from the center because this will allow the water to come in contact with the nutrient-rich compost that will direct nutrients into the soil to the roots of plants.
What to plant in a keyhole garden
These are just a few of many that can be added to this list.
The benefits of a keyhole garden
- Easy plant accessibility
- Low cost to construct
- Low maintenance
- Encourages soil enrichment
- Environmentally friendly
- Will give a good harvest
- Can hold moisture saving water
The final word on keyhole garden tips
Constructing a keyhole garden is the way to go because this garden type offers so many benefits and they are easy to maintain. Keyhole gardens are great for planting edible crops. If you haven’t constructed a garden as yet then consider a garden of this sort. Keyhole gardens have made a name for themselves, this popular garden method is making waves so why not get in on the action and have a garden of your own you will be so happy that you invested the time that will pay off in big ways.