If you’re putting in a vegetable garden this year, February is a good time to prepare new beds for planting—or to get your old garden beds back in shape. For new garden beds, till the area well and go through the plot, removing any weeds or clumps of grass and any rocks, twigs or other debris in the soil. For established beds, remove any weeds that have collected over the winter.
February would also be a good time to get your garden soil pH tested. You can get it done at your local Extension Office or bring a coffee-can sized soil sample into us for testing. Amend your soil as necessary to bring the pH close to neutral.
Top dress old beds with about two inches of mixed composts—mushroom compost mixed with Leaf-Gro or Black Kow, for example. Top dress new beds with three to four inches. You don’t need to turn it under or till it in at this point. Let Mother Nature’s rains take care of washing some of those nutrients down into the soil. Till or turn the soil under just before planting.