In a previous article I let you know that our soil is not ideal for gardening. Marisa and I knew we would have some work ahead of us when we moved in. After all, we live in the high desert of Utah and lush gardens aren't the thing that one thinks about one hearing the word desert. Here is what we did to prepare our first plot. Hopefully there will be many more like it.
Marisa called her brother ( a landscape architect one of our contributors) Cameron and he gave us the equation to figure out how much compost we would need. Our first plot is 15 ft x 25 ft which is 375 square feet. We decided that we wanted 6" of compost. Using the information on yesterday's post we calculated how many cubic yards we needed to add. (375 square feet *.5)/27=6.94 square yards of compost. This seems like a lot of compost, a but we considered it an investment that would pay off. Then we loaded the compost into our wheelbarrow and added it to the tilled garden area. Using a rake we spread it out about 6 inches deep throughout.
Our goal with this plot is to refrain from tilling. Now that it is dug up and loose, we will probably just continue to add mulch and compost as our backyard farm produces waste. As we add this material our expectation is that our soil will get better and better without having to be tilled up each year.
As a side note, it is still pretty cold at nights here in Utah so we haven't planted our starts for fear of them being damaged. Where are you in the process of getting your gardening?