I plan to plan a backyard garden in 2011. I don't have any real power tools for plowing or breaking up the soil. I will have to spade it up vs using a tiller. When whould I start? I have been told that I need to spade up the ground during the winter to allow the elements to brake down the soil since I don't have a tiller. Is that true? and if so . . . when should I start digging up the garden spot?
Turning the Soil to Prepare for Spring Planting
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
The best time to work soil is in the spring when it has dried out some. If you work it in the winter or early spring, you can actually compress the soil because it is too wet, and this makes it hard to grow in.
There are many methods you can use to make a bed and not all of them involve hard labor like digging. Here are a few articles on different ways to make a bed: