Digging Dirt

March 1, 2008

Now is the time to take stock of your garden’s soil. How rich is it? Ideal soil is a rich loam that drains well but keeps moisture in. The texture of the soil should be crumbly but not too fine or rock hard so air and water can reach plant roots.

If you are in doubt about the condition of your soil send a sample off to your local agricultural extension service for a soil test. A PH6-6.5 is ideal. If you have clay soil as I do, then working in compost will help to loosen it.

When it comes to gardening, preparation is everything!

Don’t have room for a garden? Consider containers. You can use tubs, pots, lined wooden crates; some people have even grown vegetables in old worn out tires! Plants that do especially well in containers are tomatoes and lettuces. Watering is important because containers dry out quickly so you will need to water at least once a day. So even if you have a roof top apartment in New York City, you can have fresh vegetables growing right outside your door!

Tomato, pepper, and eggplant seeds should be started at least 10 weeks before the plants are put out in the garden. This is determined by the last frost date in your area. But you can also buy reputable plants from nurseries.

Remember; there are more ways than one to enjoy a garden. But in order to enjoy one you have to have one! Now there’s no excuse.

Happy planting!

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