The Q&A Archives: Immature gardener

Question: I am a newborn at gardening.I have an elongated rectangular shaped flower garden alongside my driveway that receives sunlight all day.The weeds that existed was pulled, the soil was raked and covered with plastic for four months to prevent sunlight in order for the weeds not to grow.I received this advice from a tv show I watched.I noticed the weeds were not producing.The next step for me is to combat the ants and mosquitoes that surrounds the garden area,strengthen the soil, and start a low maintenance garden of flowers that can handle constant sunlight throughout the day.

Answer: Good luck with your project! If you have a specific question please feel free to use the Q&A with one question per entry. As your next step I would strongly suggest you work with your county extension to run some basic soil tests and then based on the results begin adding any needed amendments for a flower bed.

In all likelihood your soil will benefit from adding organic matter. Autumn leaves as well as (herbicide free) grass clippings are great to use in the fall. You can add them to a compost pile or you can dig them into the soil to begin to break down during the winter. You could also consider planting a cover crop such as annual rye to protect your soil from erosion this winter.

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