Laying Out the Outline For Your Garden
After you have decided where you will place your garden, you need to plan out the outline. Do you want your garden to be in a circular shape? A rectangle? Perhaps you want to create some natural looking curves as the outline for your garden.
A good idea is to draw the outline on a piece of paper first in order to get an idea of how you would like the garden to look. Then, use an extension cord or a hose to form the design in just the way you want it. The nice thing about using an extension cord or a hose is that you can easily change the layout if you don’t like the way it looks. I have also used white spray paint and sprayed the grass to form the outline. This provides you with a guide when digging out the garden bed.
Preparing The Land
Now that you have selected a location for your garden, you need to prepare the land. This means removing weeds and grass, loosening the dirt, and amending the ground if necessary.
Removing Weeds and Grass
There are several products available on the market that are designed to permanently remove and kill weeds and grass. Do not use these products to prepare your garden bed. These products destroy the nutrients in the ground and can make it virtually impossible to grow anything in that area for a year or more.
Use Your Shovel
If you are planning to plant your garden in an area that has weeds or grass, the best way to remove the vegetation is with a shovel. Using a spade, dig a couple inches into the surface of your garden plot. The exact depth you will need to dig depends on the type of vegetation you are removing. If it is mostly grass, a couple inches should be plenty.
Once you have started a hole at the proper depth, you should be able to use your spade to essentially skim the surface of your garden plot. Do this by holding the spade at an angle that is almost parallel to the ground. The goal is not to dig deep into your garden. Rather, the goal is to simply take off the top layer of the ground in order to get rid of the grass. Dispose of the grass and weed layers you have removed, preferably in a compost pile if you have one started. If you don’t, this is the perfect time to start one!
Make Some Sod
If the grass you are removing from the garden plot is nice, healthy grass, you might also remove it by cutting it into sod. In this way, you can transplant the grass to another area of your lawn that might need it. To cut the grass into sod, use your spade to cut out rectangular shapes within the grass. After you have cut out the outline, slip the spade beneath the shape to loosen up the roots underneath.
After the grass has been adequately loosened, you can roll the rectangular piece of sod up and place it in a cart or wheelbarrow. Then, take the sod to the new location and lay it down flat on the ground. Then, piece together all of your pieces of sod until the area is filled completely. Be sure to water the sod thoroughly. It should be very wet in order to help the roots take hold. Continue watering the area at least once per day for one to two weeks.