bad soil - Knowledgebase Question

philadelphia, Pe
Avatar for chevyamir
Question by chevyamir
July 6, 2010
I have a rectangle patch of dirt in my back yard which is mostly surrounded by cement yard. I want to turn the dirt area into a little garden bu the dirt looks so bad that I can not see anything pretty growing there. I have only seen weeds grow there. What should I do?

Answer from NGA
July 6, 2010
Start by amending the soil with compost or other organic matter. It will help loosen the soil and add nutrients and anything you plant should thrive. I spread 4-5 inches of compost over the top and dig it in to a depth of 8-10 inches. When the soil is completely mixed and leveled, plant your seeds or transplants. To help suppress weeds, slow water evaporation and moderate soil temperatures, spread 2-3 inches of compost over the bare soil between the plants. At the end of the gardening season you can dig the mulch into the soil and add a fresh layer. Repeat this procees on an annual basis and you'll end up with rich garden loam, and a fantastic garden!

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