Answer: You can amend the soil by spreading 3"-4" of organic matter (aged-compost, aged-manure or leaf mold) over the soil surface and digging it in to a depth of about 8". This will loosen the soil, help it retain moisture, and provide nutrients to the roots as the organic matter breaks down. After planting you can put additional organic matter around the plants to help suppress weeds. Or, you can cover the bed with a weed barrier, cut holes for the plants, then finish the job by hiding the weed barrier with chipped bark or stones.
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