Garden Soil.

Litchfield Park, AZ

Hello everyone, I am so happy to find this website I am a new gardener (or trying to be) I purchased a 72 Jiffy seed pellet, I planted Cucumbers, Jalapenos, eggplant, cilantro, basil and Gray squash. The Gray squash and cucumbers are growing and the basil is startning to come up too.

Now I'm getting my soil ready, Ive been weeding and aerating the soil the garden will be on a spot where it gets morning sun and afternoon shade, which I think its a good thing since I live in Phoenix. Soil looks pretty good to me, its a darker shade of brown and it just looks healthy I squeezed it in my hand and its stays in a ball but crumbles with any pressure.

My questions are: Do I absolutely have to get every weed and root out of there?
What mix ratio of compost garden soil and potting mix should I use?
How do I remove the net from the bottom of the sprouts?
The sprouts look very healthy and not "leggy" do I still need to put them under shop lights before hardening?

Thank you very much for helping. I definitively need guidance :)

Delhi, LA

Hi Sandra, Weeding is an on going problem. There will always be some to pull up. The key is to not let it get a head of you. I don't know what your schedule is but I check my garden nearly every morning and pull or hoe out what ever weeds or grass I find.

Compost is something you need to add all the time. Usually when your summer crop is through and your ready to till add compost the same in the spring. Just a good hefty layer a couple of times a year will make a good garden better each year.

I just take my knife and run down the side of the pellets and forget the net. It will rot. If you are going to pot the plugs just set them out in the sun and let them harden off. You can do the whole tray that way but they will get leggy unless you soon either pot or plant out in the garden.

Litchfield Park, AZ

Thank you for the response! I a.c. in the process may seedlings look very good :)

Delhi, LA

Enjoy gardening, it a wonderful past time. I can get in the garden and feel the stress of this hectic world fade away. It is also nice to have pleanty of fresh veggies to eat. and share. Don't be afraid to experiment, that is half the fun. In areas like you and I live in we can keep something growing the year round.

Madras, OR

I amend my soil heavily, and then plant closely. The plants shade the soil and reduce water loss as well as retard weed sprouting. You can mulch around the edge of the bed to also slow water loss, and keep weeds at bay. They really need to be kept out of the garden. They take resources from the soil, compete for water and go to seed making more problems for the future.

One of the books that became my bible is The No Work Garden Book by Ruth Stout. Makes gardening way easy

SE Houston (Hobby), TX(Zone 9a)

Which veggies are you planting close? And, how close is "close?"

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