Answer: One of the most important steps you can take in preparing a new garden is to run some basic soil tests. Then you would add appropriate amounts of any needed amendments such as lime or fertilizer based on the results. You should also add ample amounts of organic matter such as compost, old rotted leaves, aged stable manure/bedding and so on to help feed the soil. Soil preparation can be done any time the ground is not frozen and is not too muddy to be worked. Usually it is a good idea to prepare the area and allow it tp settle for a little while before planting. Your county extension should be able to help you with the soil testing and interpreting the results. Their telephone number is 774-3003. One additional consideration in your garden, since you mentioned having trees, is that most vegetables need full sun all day in order to grow and produce well, so keep that in mind while selecting the location for your garden.
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