I’m starting a garden and need advice.?

This file deleted asks: I’m starting a garden and need advice.?
I live in NC and have red clay. So, I was advice to till the yard but, I don’t have the equipment and strength to break up the soil.

I wanted to put down cardboard and purchase a heep of blackgold(soil) from the county. I wanted to plant seeds of corn, squash and zucchini. Also, plant the live plants of sweet potato. I was going to pot mint leaves, basil and tomatoes.

I was advice that I should put sand in the area were I am planting sweet potatoes.

My backyard gets a lot of sun (8-10 hours in the summer.)

Should I put fertilizer down? I want to grow organic. How could I prevent bugs, rabbits, snakes? I don’t think I have a deer problem since I live in a subdivision. Should I put mulch down?
Can I use the same cardboard concept with my flower bed or should I use newspaper?
I tried a garden last year and wasted a lot money. So, I really need great advice. Thanks in advance.
I forgot to ask. When should I put the seeds and plants in the soil? I always thought april.

Should I let the cardboard sit in the ground for about 2 weeks before I place the seeds and plants down?
I forgot to ask. When should I put the seeds and plants in the soil? I always thought april.

Should I let the cardboard sit in the ground for about 2 weeks before I place the seeds and plants down?

The answer voted best is:

Answer by egan
Too much details to tell you. Just go to your local Library and borrow this book. “The all new Square Foot Gardening” by Mel Bartholomew. He’ll give you good advice and the easiest way to start a new garden. Even a beginner can easily follow his instructions. Believe me you will thank me in the end. All your questions and concerns are all there.

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  1. In gardening you should know the basic first,
    The following tips are basic generic tips.

    During the month of January, you can add beneficial elements to your soil such as compost, manure, peat, or any other organic material. This is also a good time to plan your garden layout and order your seeds and plants if you order from catalog. During January, you can also prune your fruit-trees. January is also a good time to sow shallots in order to have a good harvest of winter greens. If you plant shrubs and trees in January they will also have a sufficient time to establish good root systems. Many winter shrubs have beautiful colors such as honeysuckle and winter jasmine.

    During the month of February, you can begin starting your seeds indoors. Herbs, flowers and some vegetables can be planted inside during the month of February. Always check your packages to make sure of the germination and growth times for your particular seeds that you are planting. Seeds such as nasturtium can be planted outside towards the end of February depending upon your location. The month of February is also a great time to check your gardening tools and tillers to make sure they are all in working order. February is a great time to plant sweet peas, mint and potatoes.

    During the month of March, you should begin to loosen and turn the soil. In doing so at this time you will help to aide in aeration and drainage, making sure the soil is not to wet or to dry when you begin to cultivate it. If you cultivate the soil while it is too wet or dry, you may very well ruin the soils natural structure making it poor for planting. Always add some nutrients back into your soil when you begin cultivating such as lime and fertilizers. Many of the more prolific annuals can be transplanted during late March such as: Sweet William, dianthus, snapdragons, calendula and alyssum. Many herbs should also be transplanted or planted during this time period such as radishes, parsnips, turnips, carrots, artichokes, lettuces, kale and cabbages.

    During the month of April, you can begin deciding where you will put all your flowers. Be sure to pay close attention to the colors so you get the most out of your plantings. You will want to try to get your yellow, orange and red blooming flowers to the front part of your flowerbed, and place your blues and silvers towards the middle of the bed and all other colors at the back. Weeds are also going to begin popping up during the month of April so begin quickly pulling them as you see them. This month is also a good time to prune rose trees.

    During the month of May, you can put out your remaining transplants and it’s best to put them out on a cloudy day with little wind. This is not always possible due to schedules and such as that, but if possible wait until you have a cloudy calm day to transplant or wait until very late in the afternoon, early evening. This is also a good time to apply mulching since it helps with soil temperature and moisture content in the soil. This is also the month to think about placing all the annual plants that you will be purchasing from the greenhouse etc., or maybe you are wanting to cut down your yearly planting and have decided to go with perennials. Perennials that require little work and flower every year are: coneflower, coralbell, bleeding hearts, hosta, veronica, daylily and dianthus.

    During the month of June, which is commonly referred to as the month of roses you need to carefully check all plants and beds for signs of mildew. This is also going to be a very busy time for weeding and keeping the plants moist. Watering will be very important during this month as will the use of the hoe. Weeds will prosper and take control of your garden or flowerbed if you do not keep active with the removal of them during this month. Many perennial flowers can also be cut away and a second blossoming can be garnished from most.

    During the month of July, you can begin to dry your herbs such as thyme and sage. And harvest the parsley and even possibly get in a second planting of parsley. Other vegetables that are done producing towards the end of July first of August can be turned over and the ground covered with some organic mulch or manure. This is also a good time if you want greens during the winter to plant them. July is almost the best time to gather cuttings from your plants for next year.

    During the month of August, you should keep the garden as clean and well watered as possible. Remove all weeds as they show up and keep picking the fruits and vegetables as they ripen. Many peppers and tomatoes will at their peak during the first weeks of August and into early September, they will be showing signs of stagnation. This time of the year is also the best time for planting your winter spinach and cabbage plants. This is also the best time for you to remove all your annual flowers that have stopped flowering. Dig them up and get rid of them.

    During the month of September,

  2. red clay?

    hmmm…that’s acidic…

    well you can grow some of the vegetables in pots…
    or you can practice minimum tillage if you want to plant corn, squash and zucchini.

    add sand when planting sweet potato to have bigger sweet potatoes…

    when using organic fertilizer…
    apply it first before planting…
    put fences to minimize pests.

    you can also put mulching materials to minimize weeds…

    putting cardboard down for two weeks can be beneficial…
    it suppress weed growth, increase the soil temperature and soil moisture.

    PS: try to subject your soil for soil analysis or you can check it for your self. the pH level, and the nutrient availability using test crops. if the pH is acidic, add some lime.

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