How to transform a hard pan compact soil into light + fluffy sponge cake ready for planting!

We have developed the Roebuck fork over the last six years + it has been a fundamental game changer for our bed preparation.

Steps to prepare a new garden bed with hand tools in a compact soil.

Mark out the bed 75 cm wide.

Rip the edge with a steel fork: this creates a separation between the path and the growing area.

To aerate heavy soils stand on top of the fork and push the handlebar forwards and backwards: This allows the tool to penetrate deep before cracking the soil open. The first pass is the big job after the first rip, we then use the Tilther to surface cultivate .

The second past, with the fork is much easier this pass is made by standing on the path: followed by another surface cultivation with the Tilther.

We then shape the bed with a rake and apply 25 mm of compost and any amendments on top based on soil testing: this is then incorporated with the Tilther.

Final shaping of the bed is done with a rake + we now have a new bed to plant. The aeration process allows the root systems to grow deep and we have seen great soil to root contact created from this bed prep.

Ongoing tasks are now very easy: transplanting, pulling weeds and future aeration is effortless.

Our growing beds are 14 m long: outdoors we plan for four harvests per year + indoors six harvests per year with a conservative crop harvest income of $400 each time.

The Roebuck Fork


The Roebuck Fork Standard size 1100mm or for gardeners over 6ft 1200mm. A beautiful quality tool made highly durable material to last a lifetime.

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