Last updated on October 23rd, 2023 at 08:57 pm
Annual cultivation of vegetables requires the regular repetition of a number of maintenance operations, which allows to create optimal growing conditions. Care from the soil represents the most important procedure – so how to dig up the garden, so that the soil gives your favorite vegetables the right conditions for growth?
Test your soil
Digging up your garden has many benefits. First, the soil should be dug up so that it becomes properly aerated and sufficiently permeable, which will help in the subsequent growth of plants. However, this requires evaluating the structure in advance so that you can possibly improve it.
Testing soil structure is extremely simple – take a handful of soil in your hand and observe what happens to it. If it flows loosely through your fingers, it’s too sandy. One that is clumped and not flaking at all is considered clayey. It is best if the soil is only partially loose, but at the same time has a clear texture that is not too hard.
Fortunately, if the soil structure leaves much to be desired, it can be improved during gardening. This activity also brings other benefits: it allows you to effectively fertilize the soil, eliminate weeds and bring pests to the surface.
When should you dig your garden?
Digging the garden is done twice a year – the first time before planting seedlings in vegetable beds, and the second time after all the plants have been harvested in the fall. It is worth doing this both in spring and in autumn, if you are dealing with heavy and clayey soil – then digging the garden has a positive effect on the development of plants. However, if you are dealing with lighter soil, you can do it less often or not at all.
Digging the soil in the spring can remove unwanted weeds and stones that may be in the soil. In the fall, on the other hand, pest larvae are brought to the surface where they consequently die or are eaten by birds.
How to properly dig up your garden?
How to dig up properly? First, you should clean the soil of plants and stones, and then insert a spade to a depth of about 25-30 cm. The soil must be turned over in the first place. When digging the garden again in the spring, the remains of weeds can be easily removed. Then you should also take care of carefully digging the soil and preparing it for sowing.
Tools for digging
Are you perhaps wondering about the best methods for quickly digging up your garden, and at the same time you want to find out what gardening tools you should use for this purpose? All the work can be done with basic tools, such as a spade to dig the soil, a fork with wide teeth to remove weeds and their roots, and a rake to level the soil. However, if you want to save time and energy, you can use a tiller, which will make the whole job a breeze.
How to properly dig up with the help of manure and other fertilizers?
How to properly dig a garden to further enrich the soil with nutrients necessary for plant nutrition? While doing this, it is a good idea to add natural fertilizers to the soil in the form of compost or manure. Compost can be used successfully both in the fall and in the spring, while virtually all types of liquid manure are suitable only for feeding the soil in the fall. Manure represents an exceptionally strong fertilizer that can damage young plants.
Organic fertilizers are especially important for light, sandy soils, as they enrich with humus, which not only provides more nutrients, but also contributes to the plasticity of the soil. Thanks to this, it is possible to keep life-giving water in the soil and create an optimal soil structure.
How to dig the soil with manure or compost? In this case, the fertilizer must be distributed on the buried soil. Consequently, the whole thing must be thoroughly mixed. It is important not to leave organic nutrients on the surface, because the mineral compounds begin to oxidize, which in turn leads to the loss of valuable properties of fertilizers.
Properly digging garden – summary
Digging a garden brings tangible benefits to growers of plants and vegetables, especially if they enrich the soil with organic fertilizers. However, it is worth considering the frequency of digging, taking into account not only soil fertility and the type of soil, but also the type of vegetables being planted. Also remember that your root vegetables will effectively loosen the soil. Through this simple and undemanding process, you can increase your yield and provide your plants with very good growing conditions.