Gardening question: whether to remove the turf when starting vegetable patch?

aaltonen asks: Gardening question: whether to remove the turf when starting vegetable patch?
I’m going to turn a bit of the back garden from lawn into a vegetable patch. Do I need to remove the top layer of grass/turf/lawn, or can I just dig it in? In other words, if I run over the area with a cultivator which ‘minces’ the turf into the ground, is this OK or will it cause some problems to my vegetables?

The answer voted best is:

Answer by greenfingers
If you had time you could just cover it with newspaper and layers of leaves and grass cuttings. The “No Dig” method. This would kill off the grass and make all the goodness go back into the area. This does take a good few months though and most people do it in the autumn.
You cannot dig turf in I am afraid. It will just grow back. You will have to lift the turf off but it does lift quite easily. If you cut a square about a foot or so in size then lift with a fork it should peel away. Hard work but do-able.

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  1. yes you should rototil and remove the grass/sod etc from your garden bed.
    when you leave grass and weeds where you plan to plant the newly planted seedlings have to compete with the grass and weeds for root space and nutrients.

    you should also til in compost or seasoned manure to give your plants a boot, after removing the weeds and grass.

    if you want to really prevent weeds and grass from bothering your garden you can put down black plastic or weed block paper.

  2. we removed turf and dug over in the Autumn and left through winter
    to kill any bugs off we now have Lovely plot for veg’s

  3. remove sod at a depth of 2 inches add lime light coat till in ( plant )after plants come up layer around with leaves water in fall till again layer with leaves or straw u can use card board too

  4. If you plan to plant the same season that you till the turf, you probably should remove it. Otherwise you could turn it under a couple of times over a several month period so it will decay and add nutrients to the soil before you plant your garden. Even if you “mince” it in and plant veggies right away it won’t hurt your vegetables. It will just make more work for you to keep the regrowing grass and weeds from overtaking again.

  5. I took out the lawn when i started my garden. it seemed to help alot with the weeds. I think it looked nicer too. It was hard work but definitely worth it!

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