Ask a Question forum: Vegetable Garden

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Massachusetts (Zone 6a)
Nov 5, 2017 6:12 PM CST
I was preparing vegetable garden for the next spring. After pulling off dead vegetables by hand, I dug up the soil to remove roots. There were a lot of roots and they were mostly lumps of thin roots and there were a lot of earthworms around the lumps, with many of them tangled with the roots. It took a rather long time to remove earthworms from the roots before throwing away the root lumps (so that I can keep the worms in the vegetable bed). My question is: Should I always remove the roots of the current season's vegetable when preparing for the next season (that is what I was doing)? Or, is it OK if I just pull the dead plants but keep the roots in the soil?
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Nov 5, 2017 7:02 PM CST
I pull whatever will pull and leave the rest. By spring, some of it will decompose and add organic matter back into your soil. What doesn't decompose by then can be tossed out.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

Minnesota (Zone 3b)
Nov 5, 2017 9:57 PM CST
It would be easier just to turn over the garden, with a shovel by hand depending on what type they are.
I often dig a hole, or holes and bury, again depending on plant, the plants I pull
Massachusetts (Zone 6a)
Nov 6, 2017 6:44 AM CST
To Daisyl and RpR: That makes sense. Thank you for your replies.
Name: kathy
Zone 4b, near St. Clair MI
Cottage Gardener Lilies Organic Gardener
Nov 6, 2017 8:17 PM CST
I cut (brush hog) the foliage and leave the roots alone for the winter in the veg garden. Come spring we disk up the soil, which chops up the decaying roots. Like Daisy said, lots of nice organic matter.
"Things won are done, joy's soul lies in the doing." Shakespeare
Massachusetts (Zone 6a)
Nov 7, 2017 11:26 AM CST
To KatesFlowers: Thanks for the tip. I appreciate it.

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