Postharvest tilling

Working the soil in the fall pays big dividends the following spring. Use a rotary tiller or spading fork to' turn undersurface refuse-weeds, stalks and dead leaves. A tiller used in fall also accelerates the breakdown of soil-building materials that occurs naturally during the winter. That means richer, more workable soil the following spring.

That's one classic method of establishing and maintaining a vegetable garden. Other ways have been developed, and are worth consideration by all gardeners.

THE GARDENING METHOD EXPLOSION

So popular has vegetable gardening become today, that not only are millions of new gardeners growing vegetables, but dozens of different gardening methods are springing up all across the country. These methods differ in one way or another from the conventional way of planting vegetables in wide rows in a fairly large garden. Here are a few.

Small-Space Intensive Gardening

A good method for city gardeners who have only small flowerbed type spaces. After intensive cultivation utilizing compost and manure, seeds are broadcast across the bed, utilizing all the space. The system uses dynamic plant groupings with key producer plants surrounded by secondary and tertiary plantings. Vine crops, including squash and watermelons, are grown in the air on a trellis. This method produces a tremendous yield while requiring fifty percent less labor and water.

Reference: The Backyard Vegetable Factory by

Duane G. Newcomb (Rodale, Emmaus, PA).

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