Soil: Preparing The Site For Spring Planting. How To Make The Beds Correctly? Photo

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Soil: Preparing The Site For Spring Planting. How To Make The Beds Correctly? Photo
Soil: Preparing The Site For Spring Planting. How To Make The Beds Correctly? Photo

Video: Soil: Preparing The Site For Spring Planting. How To Make The Beds Correctly? Photo

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Video: How to Prepare Your Garden Soil for Planting Vegetables in 3 Easy Steps // Spring Garden Series #8 2023, February

Drops are ringing in the yard, April begins - the time for preparing the soil for sowing and planting vegetables in open ground.

The main condition for obtaining a high, high-quality harvest depends on the preparation of the soil. All plants need fertile, if possible light, loose, water and air permeable soil, which decays in a mature state into small lumps. Floating, heavy or sandy conditions cannot provide the required conditions. Such soils need refining, which consists in the introduction of rippers, additional organic matter and in other techniques and methods.

Spring soil preparation in the garden
Spring soil preparation in the garden

Preliminary spring work on soil preparation

Determination of soil maturity

The maturity of the soil for the start of spring work is determined in different ways.

  • the leg should not sink in the soil porridge, leave a light (no more than 1-2 cm) imprint;
  • a lump of earth from the subcrustal layer of soil (from a depth of 6-10 cm) is compressed and allowed to fall from a height of about 1.3-1.5 m. A flattened lump is damp earth, crumbled is mature. Spring work can begin.
  • the soil does not form a dense lump when squeezed, it immediately crumbles when the palm is opened (usually sandy loam) - the soil is dry and watering is necessary during sowing / planting.

Spring moisture closure

As soon as the top layer of the earth is ripe, the harrowing of the soil dug up since autumn is carried out. The soil crust is broken with a rake, the surface is leveled, especially for sowing small-seeded crops. At the same time, garbage is removed from the garden (leaves, the remains of the tops of crops late harvested in the fall, supports used to tie tall plants). This technique also serves to destroy the rudiments of weeds and retains moisture in the soil.

It is especially important to cover moisture on light soils and areas with deep groundwater. In such areas, the topsoil quickly dries up.

We carry out spring harrowing and loosening of the soil in the beds
We carry out spring harrowing and loosening of the soil in the beds

Spring digging

It is best to finish the rough preparation of the soil in the autumn (digging, fertilization), and in the spring, limit yourself to preparing the top arable layer for sowing.

At the same time, heavy crumbling soils are usually dug up again in the spring. As a rule, it is carried out immediately before sowing or planting seedlings. Digging is carried out to the height of the root layer (15 cm) with or without turnover of the layer.

Digging with a turnover of the layer is carried out if the site is very clogged with rhizome weeds, if May beetles, click beetle larvae and others were seen last summer. Otherwise, it is more expedient to dig it without turning the layer, especially on depleted soils, sod, sandy. If the site is not clogged, you can limit yourself in spring to deep (10-12 cm) cultivation (manual percolation with a hoe), which will also loosen the topsoil well and close the moisture.

Why is formation turnover undesirable? Soil is a living organism, in each layer of which its inhabitants live. In the upper air-permeable horizon, there is a group of aerobic microorganisms that convert organic matter in the presence of oxygen into humic compounds available to plants. Outside the 15 cm layer is the kingdom of anaerobes, for which oxygen is a poison. Reversal of the seam changes the living conditions of both groups, causing their death. The vacant place is occupied by pathogenic microflora, the quality of the soil decreases, which means that the conditions of the crops grown will worsen in the future. More often the root system of plants will be affected by diseases.

Green manure is a good improver of soil fertility and its physical condition. You can learn more about the role of siderates and the technology of their use in the relevant articles. Green manure perfectly cleans the soil from weeds, loosen the top layer with its root system and enrich it with organic matter due to decomposing biomass. Spring work on beds with green manure: dig up green manure or just mow the aboveground mass and plant seedlings or sow seeds directly into live stubble.

On summer cottages, it is most advisable to carry out gardening in beds and rows, which allows you to carry out all spring work more efficiently and on time: to free the garden from weeds, fertilize, water, plant seedlings.

Row gardening

Row gardening involves sowing or planting in one row of tall, large plants (tall tomatoes, cucumbers, climbing beans) or with one ribbon (carrots, onions, radishes). Paths for crop care are left between rows and belts. It should be noted that individual rows are not the most successful use of the garden plot: a large amount of soil is occupied by paths; when processing plants, solutions fall on the next row with a crop that cannot be treated with the drug used, it is inconvenient to water the plants, etc.

Row gardening is more often used when decorating borders, in vegetable beds or areas designated for medicinal crops, when growing tall or climbing crops.

Garden garden

With a small area of ​​the garden, it is more rational to use the beds for growing crops.

The beds are subdivided into

  • classic,
  • deep, trench
  • elevated,
  • beds - boxes,
  • beds - boxes.

Garden gardening allows you to introduce crop rotation, the observance of which improves the quality of the soil and the crops grown, the care and processing of plants. The beds can be made temporary, but it is better permanent, occupying a certain wedge of land in the summer cottage for vegetables and other crops.

How to make the beds correctly?

Classic beds

Classic beds are formed directly on the soil. They do not come in standard sizes. Usually, each gardener marks the area (width and length) so that it is convenient to handle the plants and care for them from the paths, without disturbing the surface of the garden.

The beds are positioned in such a way that each has a free passage from both sides. With such a device, the optimal bed width is 1.5-1.6 m. That is, on each side, you can process the bed area to the length of an outstretched arm (70-80 cm) without stepping on the bed itself. The length is arbitrary and depends on the size of the plot allocated for the garden. Between the beds, paths 50-100 cm wide are left, which will allow you to freely use garden equipment, water and process plants. By the way, weeds and other waste are dumped onto the path during the warm season, and in the fall they clean the paths, transferring the organic mass to the garden bed and digging it up as additional organic material. Permanent beds and comfortable paths will make the garden neat and attractive, and facilitate weed control.

In the garden, the plants are planted in the north-south direction. This arrangement of plants contributes to better illumination of the rows of plants, reduces their shading with each other. If the beds are oriented from east to west, then sowing / planting is not carried out along, but across the bed.

On the slopes, the beds are arranged across the slope in separate terraces.

If the beds were fertilized in the fall for digging, then the fertilizer is not applied in the spring. Work is limited to covering moisture (harrowing with a rake), pre-sowing cultivation and (if necessary) local irrigation along furrows or holes before sowing / planting.

Spring formation of beds
Spring formation of beds

Deep beds

Deep beds are divided into deepened and trench beds. With this technology, the base of the bed is deepened into the soil. Usually, in-depth beds are formed in greenhouses, and in open ground - on sod land or sod areas.

As for the classic, mark the area of ​​the garden. A peg is driven into each corner and a signal cord is pulled at the same height. A layer of turf is cut with a knife or a shovel around the perimeter of the bed (it may not have 4, but 5-6 corners - according to your choice). Roll it up like a carpet.

It turns out the base of a deepened bed. To reduce the germination of weeds, the base of the beds is covered with a dense flooring made of any available natural materials - cardboard, old newspapers, old magazines read out to the holes, rags. A sod carpet is laid on the base with the sod down. And then 10-12 cm layers are interspersed with humus, earth (from the tracks), compost. The order of laying the layers is at the choice of the owner, the main thing is that the top layer should be of high quality, better than humus soil. In the spring, the bed is harrowed to cover the moisture. Before sowing / planting, loosen again and watered topically (if necessary). No fertilization required. From early spring, such a bed can be occupied by cold-resistant crops. Humus and compost, decomposing, will increase the temperature of the soil layer. And for cold-resistant crops, + 3 … + 5 * C is enough,to start seeding. After harvesting early maturing crops with a short growing season, seedlings of heat-loving crops can be planted. Trench beds are mainly used in the south. Trenches are dug to a depth of 30-50 cm. The base is dug with the introduction of organic and mineral fertilizers. The soil does not dry out. Plants are hidden from the burning rays of the sun, they form good yields, and they get sick less. But, such beds are only suitable for soils with good water permeability. On clay, chernozems and other loose soils, roots will become soaked everywhere and root rot will appear.The soil does not dry out. Plants are hidden from the burning rays of the sun, they form good yields, and they get sick less. But, such beds are only suitable for soils with good water permeability. On clay, chernozems and other crumbling soils, roots will become soaked everywhere and root rot will appear.The soil does not dry out. Plants are hidden from the burning rays of the sun, they form good yields, and they get sick less. But, such beds are only suitable for soils with good water permeability. On clay, chernozems and other loose soils, roots will become soaked everywhere and root rot will appear.

Box beds
Box beds

High beds

Recently, farming without digging has been gaining recognition. It is most convenient to carry it out in elevated or high beds. Farmers give them different names, but the main point is that the soil in such beds does not need digging. The top layer is enriched with useful microflora, weeds are easily destroyed.

Every year, organic matter is introduced to the garden, weeding under crops is replaced by mulching.

The technology of breaking such beds consists in creating a fence for elevated beds of 20-25 cm, for high beds up to 50-60, sometimes up to 90 cm. Fenced beds laid on the ground have received different names from gardeners:

  • compost,
  • raised,
  • warm,
  • high vegetable garden,
  • puff garden,
  • garden lasagna.

A bulk raised, or compost, warm bed is usually arranged right on the garden plot. Standard-sized beds are fenced with suitable material: boards, shields, wicker vines and others. The soil can be dug onto a shovel's bayonet to increase its permeability. Dry branches, tree bark, wood chips, shavings, leaves, sawdust straw, old rags are laid on the dug-up surface or directly on the ground, sprinkling them with soil. On top, in a layer of 10-12 cm, compost or rotted manure, straw with bird droppings are placed. The next layer is soil and again organic matter. Calculate so that the top layer is from good garden soil, you can mix leaf with humus. The planned fertilization can be applied to the top layer under the rake. Soil, humus, mature compost are added to the settling bed. You can use green manure - green manure.Better to sow oats or rye without digging into the soil. Just scatter the seeds over the top of the soil and soak the bed. Water if necessary. It is advisable to leave the green manure until spring. In spring, cut the aboveground mass and use it for mulching crops or when planting seedlings.

Multi-layer beds should not be dug up. Only add a mixture of organic matter with soil annually. Before planting / sowing, slightly loosen the top 5-10 cm layer. By spring, such a bed is watered with hot water, insulated with a covering material, straw. Organic matter "catches fire", that is, it intensively decomposes with the release of heat. The soil in such a bed warms up 6-12 days faster than ordinary ground soil. A warm bed allows you to plant seedlings earlier (if necessary, under cover) and get an earlier harvest of vegetables. Elevated, insulated beds can be laid in the crop rotation in all regions.


Garden beds have long been used by gardeners. These are the same greenhouses in which seedlings are grown in early spring, and after their selection, vegetable crops are planted in a permanent place. They are good in that after sampling the seedlings, they practically do not need preparation, since the soil for seedlings is always prepared very carefully and with sufficient fertilization.

Row method of arranging a vegetable garden
Row method of arranging a vegetable garden


Box beds have appeared relatively recently and have already been evaluated in areas with humid summers and cold climates.

Their device repeats the construction of elevated beds. More details can be found in the corresponding article. This type of bed has several advantages:

  • in the northern regions, the bulk bed cuts off the cold soil,
  • overheating of organic residues creates an early positive soil temperature, which accelerates the sowing / planting of early crops,
  • water does not spread during watering,
  • no weeds
  • it is easy to deal with moles, its bottom is lined with a fine mesh.

Beds-boxes in one place can "work" up to 6-8 years or more, if they are arranged thoroughly.

Complicating care

After 3 years, the embedded organic matter will burn out. The top layer of soil will need to be removed, replaced with a fresh layer of soil, preferably organic, followed by mulching with an organic-soil mixture. To prevent the soil from overheating in the box, frequent watering is necessary, which destroys the structure of the soil. After a few years, new organic soil layers are needed to start a warm bed, which complicates maintenance.

And at the same time, in the cold north of the box-bed, this is progress in open field vegetable growing.

To prepare a site for early sowing, you must:

  1. The main work (harvesting plant residues, digging, fertilizing, deoxidizing, sowing green manure) is performed in the fall, which allows you to have time to prepare the soil for sowing early crops in spring.
  2. In the spring, as soon as the dry surface of the soil allows, harrowing is carried out to close (preserve) moisture. If necessary, the soil is mulched with mown green manure, small shavings, humus.
  3. With a drying wind and for faster heating of the soil, the beds are covered with lutrasil or other covering materials. This technique accelerates soil warming up to 6-12 days.
  4. In order to get an early harvest, warm beds are prepared. They can be laid in the fall and warmed up by sprinkling with hot water or in the spring by applying manure with straw under the soil layer.

The best beds for the south are classic, raised, and trench beds.

For cold regions with short summers and severe frosts in winter, it is better to grow early vegetable crops in box beds, box beds, in which the soil warms up faster, which is not associated with the main soil.

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