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Preparing soil

Preparing soil
Posted by arc+ from Montreal on 2002-03-23 08:52:01

I have 2 questions.
1) I am about to start my garden. What should I do to the soil to prepare it for veg.?

2) As the snow is melting I have to work on my lawn. What is the best way to start the season ?
  • Preparing a garden
    Posted by Kimm from 4a/5b-MI on 2002-03-25 08:11:35

    Start with -2) when the soil is workable is the time to begin, don't work on either when the soil is too wet. What to do with the lawn depends on what the problems might be, but since grasses grow in the spring trying to produce pollen and seeds there really isn't much that needs to be done other than watering and mowing. Everyone agrees that lawns need about an inch of water a week but how that is delivered is subject to much debate. Daily light watering during hot weather has been found to be better than infrequent heavy watering since that helps keep the soil temperature near to what grasses like. Mow often enough so you only cut 1/3 of the grass blades at any one time and mow high, the more grass blade exposed to the sun the more food it can manufacture to feed the roots and crown and the better the grass will grow. The best time to seed, if necessary, is early fall and the best time to feed is early fall and again around mid November with maybe another application at the end of June to help the grass during the summer, but then you really ned to water a lot.
    -1) What condition is that soil in? Working a lot of organic matter in will help. Getting a soil test can give you an idea of what you have and what could be needed to grow what you want, but mostly adding organic matter and lots will do more than anything else you can do. OM in sandy soil will help bind the particles together so there is less moisture loss and nutrients are kept in the root zone. OM in clay will help seperate the particles so more air (also important to root growth) gets in, the roots can grow out more easier, and moisture and nutrients are more readily available. But again don't mess with the soil until it's ready to be messed with or you can mess up the tilth.
  • Preparing soil
    Posted by Newt from Maryland zone 7 on 2002-03-24 23:58:27

    Quoting arc+: ------------
    -I have 2 questions.
    -1) I am about to start my garden. What should I do to the soil to prepare it for veg.?

    -2) As the snow is melting I have to work on my lawn. What is the best way to start the season ?

    A soil test would be helpful. Then you would know what is missing that you might have to add. Compost is the best amendment you can use.

    There are a lot of people that like to use chemical fertilizers on their lawns. A quarter inch of compost spread on the soil would be very helpful.

    I would suggest you try this WONDERFUL site called The Garden Web. They have forums on just about any topic you can think of. There are forums for 'Soil, Compost & Mulch', 'Lawn Care', 'Vegetable Gardening'
    • Preparing Soil
      Posted by Newt from Maryland zone 7 on 2002-03-25 00:09:14

      Quoting Newt: ------------
      -Quoting arc+: ------------
      -I have 2 questions.
      -1) I am about to start my garden. What should I do to the soil to prepare it for veg.?

      -2) As the snow is melting I have to work on my lawn. What is the best way to start the season ?

      Sorry, I hit the wrong button. I didn't finish what I wanted to share with you, so here we go again.

      -A soil test would be helpful. Then you would know what is missing that you would need to add. Compost is the best amendment you can use.

      -There are a lot of people that like to use chemical fertilizers on their lawns. A quarter inch of compost spread on the soil would be very helpful.

      -I would suggest you try this WONDERFUL site called The Garden Web. They have forums on just about any topic you can think of. There are forums for 'Soil, Compost & Mulch', 'Lawn Care', 'Vegetable Gardening' and even one for Canadian Gardening. The people there are very knowledgable and helpful. Here's the link for the Canadian Forums.
      http://forums.gardenweb.com/forums/canada/

      If you post the same question to more than one forum be sure and change the title of your post so that their computer doesn't think you are spamming. For example, if you want to use "Preparing the soil" on the 'Soil, Compost & Mulch' forum, change it for the 'Vegetable Gardening' forum to something like "Where do I start?".

      Here's the link for the topics.

      Good luck,
      Newt

      Garden Web Forums

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