Fruit, Vegetable & Herb
Preparing Garden Beds for Vegetables
The ins and outs of preparing your vegetable garden
Preparing the Soil
You don't want hard, compacted soil in your garden. So start by digging it up. While you're at it, take a moment to remove any rocks and weeds you expose. If you pull the weeds, make sure you remove all the roots. Otherwise, they'll come back next spring.
Amending the Soil
It helps to study the soil you're working with. Is it sandy or full of clay? In either case, you'll want to improve the native soil by incorporating products like Miracle-Gro® Garden Soil for Vegetables & Herbs. By amending the soil, clay soils will have improved drainage and air flow, and sandy soils will have better water holding and nutrient availability. Does it drain well, or remain soggy? You can tell by digging a hole 12 inches deep by 12 inches across. Fill the hole with water and time how long it takes to drain. After the hole drains, wait a few hours then refill it and time it again. Divide the total water depth (12 inches) by the total time it took to drain. You're looking for a rate around an inch per hour for "well-drained" soil. If your rate is much less, you may want to consider relocating your garden, if possible.