Flower Bed Preparation

New flower beds should be prepared the autumn before the first planting of annuals. Poorly drained soils must be improved by adding organic matter to the soil. Peat moss, compost, or well rotted manure are common sources of organic matter. Spade the soil to a depth of eight to ten inches, turning it over completely. Respade three to four times at weekly intervals. Work the fertilizer in prior to spring planting. Peat moss and other soil amendments may also be worked in at this time. For ordinary soil, work in one to two inches of peat moss. In sand or heavy clay, work in two to four inches of peat moss. Use one and a half pounds of 5-10-5 fertilizer per 100 square feet. Rake the soil smooth and the bed is ready for planting. Soil test results may suggest some fertilizer other than 5-10-5.