What do I need to do this year to prepare and area for a garden for next year. - Knowledgebase Question

Loveland, Oh
Question by MscNotes
June 30, 2010
I have never had a vegetable garden and am going to plant one next spring. What do I need to do this year to make it successful next year?


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Answer from NGA
June 30, 2010

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You can enrich your soil over a period of years and end up with rich garden loam if you add organic matter. Start now spring by removing all vegetation from the area and spreading 4-5 inches of organic matter over the vegetable bed. You can use compost, aged manure (fresh manure can be too hot and might contain weed seeds), shredded leaves or whatever organic matter is readily available in your local area. Dig or till this organic matter into the soil - 8-10 inches deep. Next fall or spring, plant your veggies and mulch over the bare soil between the plants with additional organic matter. A 2-3 inch layer will help suppress weeds and slow water evaporation. At the end of the season dig the organic matter into the soil and add a fresh layer. Repeat this process annually and you'll end up with rich garden loam - and a spectacular vegetable garden. Hope you have a bountiful harvest!

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