The heart of every organic English Cottage Garden is compost, and lots of it! You are looking at three cubic yards of specially blended compost which is equal to 45 bags. It isn’t going to be enough.
I add at least 4 inches of compost to my beds every year. My gardens would do better if I added twice that much. Southern Ohio soil is mostly clay, and it needs a lot of work by earthworms and microorganisms to make it friable. The only way to achieve that is to add organic material.
I make my own compost, but it’s not nearly enough to cover my beds. This year I was lucky to find a supplier who will blend compost to my specifications and deliver it for a reasonable fee. I’m using 1/3 aged manure, 1/3 leaf mold and 1/3 mushroom compost.
I’m also lucky to have the assistance of Loyal Yard Dude Alex Lang. For a reasonable fee, he will shovel compost for hours and doesn’t complain except when it comes to composting the border running down my back yard aka Mount Everest. He also doesn’t mind the bees, which is very important!
I help too, and am writing this post during our lunch break. Time to go shovel some more poop!