prep for next year garden, question

sambo725(9)October 3, 2009

I am about to start preparing my land for a garden next spring, this is my first one. The land i am going to use is about 30 x 50. currently the land is full of weeds and some grass. Should i till and rake really good, or till and leave the weeds and grass in the soil? Can i cover the land with plastic and smoother out the weeds and grass? my question is what is the best way to start a garden that is full of weeds?

thanks

sam

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maifleur01

You ask a question that there are as many answers as there are gardeners. What I would do is mow the weeds and rake to the side as a compost pile. Then I would gather as many leaves as you can and then either lay down cardboard or newspaper as a base. Top the base with all of the leaves and either grandular fertilizer or plain household sugar. Wet and allow to set until late winter. The sugar will help feed the organisims that break down the leaves. The wetting will keep leaves from flying away.

Late winter I would remove the loose leaves to the compost and till. You probably will need to make several passes.

Some gardeners never till but only dig enough to plant the veggies. A version of this is called lasanaga gardening. Check over in the Organic forum as there are many good ideas there.

In my soil and weather I need to get as much material in the soil to lighten it and our rain washed the sheets of material out of the garden when I tried it. After you have built up the soil nutrients no till is a good idea.

Since this is your first garden I would suggest doing a smaller space the first year or so unless you are going to do corn, melons, and squash. As a first year gardener even with lots of mulch caring for that large of an area and keeping all the veggies picked is a challenge. Do not do what one of my blog friends did and plant the whole package of cucumber seeds. Actually he planted 30+ hills of the things. A visit to the library and various seed sites is good to see what is out there. Like all gardeners you will find that you will purchase more seeds than you can plant so find a dark container to keep the leftovers in. Many will still grow after a couple of years if kept bug free in a cool dark place.

Good Luck

    Bookmark   October 4, 2009 at 9:33PM
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scottish_wildcat

I am new to the Augusta, GA area and found a house to rent with a nice size garden area in the back. I would like to have it tilled prior to planting in the spring, but I haven't been able to locate a "till for hire" type of service. Does anyone know if this is available in this area?

    Bookmark   November 30, 2009 at 7:09PM
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maifleur01

Should be. Ask your local(in area)nursery for list. They probably will not make any suggestions so you can ask but don't be surprised. You can rent a tiller and do it yourself but a lot less pain to hire it done. Some landscaping companies will do but charge more. Watch paper under Services.

If you are going to add anything to the plot have it ready and sprinkled in place before tilling.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2009 at 7:40PM
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scottish_wildcat

Thanks. I would definitely rather have someone else till it if possible. I'll see what I can find and put some mulch on it.

    Bookmark   December 1, 2009 at 7:57PM
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