What is the quickest and most easiest way to till and prep the land for spring planting????

Rocker Dude asks: What is the quickest and most easiest way to till and prep the land for spring planting????
Okay, every springtime around this month I get ready to plant veggies in my garden (I grow organics cucumber, cherry tomatoes, bittermellons, red onions amongst other things).
And every year my soil gets all hard and dried out that it forms these little “clumps” of rocks (which can easily be broken though).
The problem is that I have such a huge garden space FULL of these things and I want to know if there is ANY methods to prepare the soil (getting rid of these “clumps” of soils) quickly and easily.
Thanks for the help and advice.

Regards,
Another Average Green-Thumber
Oh, I forgot, I’ve been using the same soil for about 2-3years now… Should I replace it?

The answer voted best is:

Answer by fluffernut
Sounds like a lot of clay in your soil. Mine too. I rototill with a rear tine tiller. Several passes and the beds are just perfect. Over the years (decades) I’ve been working in organic matter (manures) at the end of the season after harvest and again several weeks before planting. Also I set aside a section not for growing crops but for growing “green manure” that is a crop that I turn in before it flowers and sets seed. I love buckwheat plants, so use that alot.

Remember, it takes longer to make a good soil than to lose it……..you are growing a healthy soil as well as healthy plants.

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3 comments

  1. Rent a roto-tiller! I don’t have this problem because I have raised bed gardens. In the spring..all I have to do is turn over the soil with a pitchfork!

  2. Maybe rent a strong,lightweight tiller after watering the ground if you dont already own one,if you cant afford it,just water well,get a shovel and start breaking up the ground.(water a lot to attract the worms which will help break up the ground too)

  3. the above suggestions are great, but you may not have sufficient organic matter (composted leaves, twigs and such) nearby to amend your soil.

    depending upon your needs and area, you may wish to start a compost pile in which you put yard waste and some leafy kitchen scraps (depending upon your rodent population).

    another way would be to contact your local utility or county authority. often they will provide wood chips from chipper trucks at no cost. you can then use these for mulch during the first season and then till under to improve the soil for the next year. trouble is, they usually just dump a big pile, which you then have to figure out a way to spread and they may contain some nuisance weeds or disease. nearby horse or cattle operations may have truckloads of manure available.

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