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Back to my Soil *sigh

Posted by ChickenCoupe none (My Page) on
Sun, Jun 26, 11 at 12:51

I'm finding I don't need raised beds but I must carefully maintain my soil. \
Okay, I have 4-8 inches of good organic topsoil with organic
(black as coal) clay material underneath this. Unfortunately, bringing up the grass immediately destroys
my topsoil (in this sun). I know what started the dust bowl. LOL
Absolutely nothing is surviving direct sun right now.
I don't know why, it's just the case for my location
(Cushing - about 25 miles South of Stillwater).
For now, I have planted everything under direct or partial tree shade.
These are thriving even though they start wilting during the hottest portion of the day.

Here's my thinking for next spring's garden soil:

We will till the rest of the yard to be planted this fall
when it's cooler turning in amendments. In the spring I will only dig up the beds
that I need by hand leaving the other grass and weeds in place to continue retaining moisture.

Can I use a trim around the edges of the beds to help keep out
unwanted bugs and creeping underground grass and weeds?

OR We might just till the rows.
You know, only tilling the larger section that I'll be
planting such as corn and beans planted in longer rows.
This will be an area about 100' by 50', btw in addition to
my already tilled section of 45' x 32' garden area.

Currently I am placing all types of cardboard and old
plywood pieces after watering over the tilled garden sections.
This seems to help tremendously. I don't think hay or
straw would cut it at all. The parts that are not covered
at all is almost a desert; Totally destroyed and incapable
of retaining moisture (without amendments).
I realize this heat is only limited and that spring will
provide nice temps but by the dog days I don't want my
garden soil completely destroyed.

Thanks!!
bon


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Back to my Soil *sigh

I've found that edging really helps keep the bermuda out of beds once you dig up the grass that is there. Then you wouldn't need to disturb the soil so much because of the weeds and can just mulch over it to keep the moisture in. For my first few beds I used that roll of plastic edging you can get at Lowes or Home Depot, but I found it hard to work with. It always wants to roll back into a circle, which is a pain when you're trying to make a straight line. Though, I've read that if you lay it out in the sun for a few hours it'll flatten out.

For the garden I'm putting in this fall, I'm going to buy the plastic edging that you pound in with a hammer (I linked to the one I'm buying below). It's made up of individual flat panels that you connect to form a line. It looks like you can pound it in deeper, too, which should be better for the bermuda and other creeping weeds.

I can't afford to do edging for every single bed right now, so I'm just going to buy enough to make a perimeter around the entire garden.

Here is a link that might be useful: Edging


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RE: Back to my Soil *sigh

Excellent. Thank you! Now I know I won't be wasting my time.


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