Preparing your garden for spring is one of the best ways to help ensure a good harvest later in the year. Preparing before you plant will also save you a lot of time down the road when it’s time to get the seeds in the ground. Plus it’s a great early spring/late winter chore to chase away the winter blues.
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Preparing A Vegetable Garden For Spring
I don’t know about you but those last weeks of winter and early spring when it’s too cold to plant are the hardest for me. I just want to get out there and get started, so until I can I make do with preparing our garden for spring. This year we’re planning on moving our raised beds around to make room for a few more and this is the perfect time to get it done.
If you prepared your garden in the fall you should be in pretty good shape for a spring garden, but there are still a few things you should do for a spring garden.
How To Get Soil Ready For Planting
Before you ever put a seed in the ground you need to make sure your soil prepared for planting. The best way to do this is to purchase a soil testing kit. This will tell you what amenities your soil needs so you can get the perfect mix of nutrients for your plants.
We also like to add a layer of composted manure to the top of our raised beds to prepare the soil for planting. Here in Tennessee, we get a lot of rain in the early spring and late winter, this will allow the nutrients in the manure to seep into the rest of the soil. When we are finally ready to plant, the soil is fertilized and ready to give the plants their best chance.
Preparing Soil For Planting
Garden soil preparation isn’t just about getting your soil ready for planting, for the organic gardener, it’s the number one way to control weeds in your spring garden. There are lots of soil preparation methods to get your spring garden ready for planting. These are just a few:
- Tilling – this breaks up the soil allowing you to easily plant and amend your soil, it can, however, bring dormant seeds to the surface to sprout.
- Double digging – similar to the tilling option this will break up your soil.
- Turning the soil with compost – rough turning your soil is another option to break up your garden plot.
- Smothering weeds – Using a newspaper or cardboard and placing it over where you plan to have your garden plot, leave it there until you are ready to plant your spring garden.
- Topdressing with compost and manure – This is a no-till method of soil preparation.
- hugelkultur – This is a centuries-old method of soil preparation, which imitates what you would see in nature.
- Soil solarization – with this soil preparation method you wet the soil of your future garden plot and then cover with plastic. Bury the edges of the plastic to trap the heat. This is not a method you can use in the winter, but if you are planning a spring garden in late summer or fall this could be a great method for you. You can read more about Soil Solarization here.
Planning For A Spring Garden
As is the case with every undertaking a plan is always a good place to start. One of the best ways to prepare your garden for spring is starting to plan what you are planting and where you want it to go. Do some research on companion planting, and preventing some pests that you struggle with over the summer.
What you will need to start planning a spring garden?
- A simple journal or garden planner
- Pen or pencil
- The date of your last frost
- Your garden zone
Start planning a spring garden by figuring out your planting zone, and the date of your last frost. Mark the date of your last frost on the calendar and write it in your journal for future use. Next figure our exactly what you want to grow in your spring garden make a list of them in your planner and journal and begin buying what you don’t have.
Preparing Your Garden For Spring
Preparing your garden for spring is an absolute necessity for a successful spring garden. It may feel like a lot of work, but it will all pay off later in the year with fresh veggies.
How do you get your garden ready for spring? Let us know below!
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