The Q&A Archives: Raised Beds

Question: How do I keep the soil enriched in raised beds that have been in existence for 3 years. Every year we add compost, fertilizer and peat moss and water and fertilize throughout the growing season. This summer's yield seemed to be less than comparable gardens in our area.

Answer: You are certainly on the right track by adding organic matter routinely as well as taking ongoing care of your soil. Raised beds are usually cultivated very intensively and as a result may require even more amendments than ordinary garden soil might. The best way to find out specifically what else to add is to run some basic soil tests and see what the soil is lacking. Your county extension (776-9631) should be able to help you with the tests and interpreting the results.

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