Preparing for the Perfect Garden
It’s amazing how gardens can enhance the beauty of a lawn. With just the right amount of space and tons of creativity, the options are endless in creating the perfect backyard escape. Here are some tips to help you prepare your lawn for the garden of your dreams.
Remove and re-plant greenery. If you live in the suburbs, you may need permission before you do this. If you live in a rural area and permission isn’t required, do not remove trees without thinking about where you’re going to re-plant them first. Consider their conservation value and how removing them can affect the soil of your lawn. If you choose to remove plants, make sure you also remove the roots to free the soil.
Clear the weeds. Weeds should be removed early in the process of creating a garden so they don’t multiply and cause larger issues in the future. Weeds with flowerheads, such as chickweeds, should be removed before producing seeds; dandelions and other deep-rooted weeds should be removed completely. Buttercup and other creeping roots are difficult to remove because the entire root has to be lifted. Refrain from using chemical weed killers where you plan on placing food crops and remove by hand.
Remove rocks. Clear away the surface and remove underground rocks too. A backhoe may be needed for rocks that are more difficult to remove; be careful when using this, as it may negatively compact the soil’s structure. Save your larger rocks and stones so you can build up your flower beds, add retaining walls, or create a terraced look.
Change a space of lawn into a garden bed. If you live in a suburban area, know that it’s common for vegetable gardens to be created in spaces that were lawn, which can be lifted square by square and used as turf or compost. Use a rotary hoe or tiller to plow the ground. Converting your lawn into a garden should be completed several months in advance before the first growing season (due to re-growth and the need for further hoeing). Cover the ground with a thick layer of manure after the second round of hoeing. Let it break down before planting.