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Flower Gardening

Q.Starting A Flower Garden – Best Practices

Zone 93004 | cpompe1 added on April 18, 2024 | Answered

Hi, I live in Ventura CA (I think I am in Zone 10) – Zip Code 93004. I am trying to start a flower garden in my backyard. I have a ledge in the back of my backyard that I am thinking of putting this flower garden. I have attached a few pics of the area. I love your weekly gardening tips but I what I really want (since I am just starting out in establishing a flower garden in part of my backyard) is to get specific advice as to the best practices for me to start a flower garden and to keep it going well. I am having someone spray the area down and then eventually rototill the area to get rid of the grass/weeds. I have landscape fabric that I thought would be a good way to control weeds/grass long term. But about preparing my soil, how should I know what to use? The soil in the area is a little “clayey”. I was told that I need to amend the area, but I don’t know with what. Honestly, I just took a sample of my soil to my local Green Thumb and I was OVERWHELMED by the advice that I got. Perhaps they were right but I just wanted, for lack of a better term, get a 2nd opinion. I really would like to talk to someone but short of that, if there is some sort of “cheat sheet” that I can have that can give me what I need to do? Thanks.

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on April 18, 2024

We are very glad to help!

There isn't a real cheat sheet, per se. generally, though, you want to amend your soil with compost, and aeration materials. Once this is done, then you can test again and begin to correct any deficiencies. Until the clay soil situation gets cleared up, though, it won't help to amend with anything specific just yet. Once the compost is tilled in and has time to settle a little, you can see what you need to add with another test.

This article will offer a little information on fixing clay soils:


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