Garden Planning, How to Dig a Flower Bed

How to Dig a Flower Bed

If you dig a flowerbed properly the first time your flowers will flourish and the bed can be prepared at the end of the season to last into the next year. A properly prepared garden bed will have better water drainage and makes watering and weeding easier which helps prevent disease and pests.

Your bed can be prepared in a way that doesn’t have to be hard on your back either.
Its best to check and see what you soil looks like. The easiest way to do this is to dig a small hole about 2 feet deep. If it’s heavy clay or rock you will have to amend the soil for better flower production. You can also buy a soil testing kit and most garden centers.

You can lay cardboard down to kill the grass and weeds and ignore for a week. You can also dig off the sod or rototill the garden area. If you use wither of these methods let the soil set for 3 or 4 days to help separate the roots from the soil. Pick as many of the soil clumps and roots out as possible. This will cut back on weeds later.

I wait another three day and re-dig the garden again. This method helps reduce weeds immensely.

Spread four to five inches of compost and any other soil amendments over the top of the area you intend for the bed. Again you will dig the soil but you need to dig as deep as possible to mix in the additives and compost you added. Dig the soil 18 inches deep for annual flowers and 24 inches deep for perennials.

When I have dug the soil for the last time I remove any last soil clumps and rocks, them smooth the soil with a garden rake.

I usually put an edge around my garden. It makes the garden look neater and is much easier to mow around.  An edging also discourages some stray garden pests.

At the end of the season I remove any dead plants and cover the garden with mowed leaves, grass clippings and straw. I have found that by doing this the ground stays soft. In the spring I can work the added ground cover in.  This benefits the soil and often I can use a hoe to break up the ground and add new plants without reworking the soil.

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