Fall vs spring soil amending

sweetwilliam89(5b)June 15, 2011

This may seem a bit early to ask, I was wondering if there's an advantage to amending the soil at the end of the year in late fall or wait until early spring and amend at the first of the year? If I amend the soil in spring how long do I need to wait until planting?

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What are you amending with?

    Bookmark   June 15, 2011 at 10:30AM
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IMHO, that's like asking "when's a good time to go fishing?" NOW!! :-)

Possible exception would be if the soil amendment is a chemical fertilize on the side of a hill which will then wander away over the winter.

The sooner you get "good stuff" in your soil the sooner it can start "amending."


    Bookmark   June 15, 2011 at 10:53AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Agree that it all depends on what you mean by 'amending' - what with?

Lots of good compost in both the fall AND the spring is ideal so it isn't spring or fall, it is both as well as throughout the year as a top dressing.

If it is fresh manure you are adding then fall, not spring is best. If it is composted well-aged manure then spring 2-4 weeks before planting. If you are talking about chemical fertilizers then most of the labels I have read say things like 2 weeks prior to planting and use as side-dressing through out the season.

So more details are needed to really answer your question.


    Bookmark   June 15, 2011 at 3:15PM
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wayne_5 zone 6a Central Indiana

If one is going to do deeper soil amending [affecting the structure and texture] in heavier soils, I suggest fall when the soil is not likely to be soggy.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2011 at 4:16PM
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I prefer fall, so we can heap high right on the empty beds rather than make a separate pile to compost & spread in spring. Any extra come spring can go on other beds that had plants overwintering.

Plus in fall there is less demand for the horse manure nearby & I can get all we have energy to haul.

A few years ago started using burlap over the manure to keep moist & loose until planting. Prevents weeds from blowing in & sprouting up plus so easy to turn under if desired or plant right in it.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2011 at 12:24AM
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