Some mythical beliefs run deep into the collective unconscious and once ingrained as "certain facts" in the public domain, they are difficult to question, even when they contain contradictions or are demonstrably untrue. There are many such beliefs in gardening, some with discernible origins in history, some which have established for no obvious reason. Gardening Myths and Misconceptions is asking questions, because mythical beliefs hide methods of easier working, for better results.
Charles Dowding is a veteran organic grower, having practised no-dig gardening for 30 years. From 1982 to 1990 he grew on nine acres for local and London markets, then ran a small farm in France, followed by a long spell of producing salad on an acre of surface-composted, undisturbed clay soil (no-dig for 15 years), which grew bountiful crops and few weeds, and included two polytunnels for winter salad and summer tomatoes and basil. In this garden he ran an experiment for six years to compare differences in growth between vegetables on dug and undug soil.