Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Is Your Soil Ready For Early Spring Planting?

Around here, people are gearing up to start putting seeds in the soil. Peas, spinach, lettuce, onions, and radishes are all early spring seeds. Potatoes (which are a modified stem, not a true root) go in the ground early also. I put mine in on St. Patrick's Day, a tradition from the Irish Catholics in my family.

If you are itching to sow your seeds, make sure the soil is ready to be worked. If it is too wet, you can damage the structure. A quick test to check for readiness is to scoop some up in your hand and squeeze it into a ball. Then poke at the ball. If it falls apart into some nice crumbly chunks, its ready. If it mushes, it's too wet.

100 sq.ft. garden I covered with tarp to dry out
On a small plot, one way to dry the soil out a little is to cover the plot completely with a dark colored tarp. I used a thick brown one on a little 100 sq.ft. garden I had years ago. The tarp will keep any more rain from getting on the soil, and if you have a cover crop the tarp will help to kill it for faster decomposition.

Happy Planting!

spring peas took over my old garden

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