Garden soil condition

Asked September 12, 2016, 10:19 PM EDT

For the last 3 years, my cucumbers have not produced. Prior to that I would have very abundant cucumber crops lasting well into September. I've also had blight on my tomatoes the last 2 years. The zucchini, beets and pole beans all have done well but not my tomato plants and cucumbers. I also had to pull a row of bush beans early this season as the plants stayed low, the beans didn't mature and then the pods were basically empty. I added several bags of peat moss prior to having the garden tilled in the spring. I rotate my crops every year. What can I do over the fall/winter to try to correct whatever is causing these problems?

Dakota County Minnesota

1 Response

Hi,

I think the first thing to do is to get your soil tested http://soiltest.cfans.umn.edu/ . It;s hard to know what to add to your soil until you know where the deficiencies are.

It's always a good idea to add organic matter to your soil (if you don't compost, you might consider that - you end up with free organic material for your garden). Compost, leaves you've raked up, a cover crop like clover, etc. will all contribute to the nutrients in your soil.https://www.pca.state.mn.us/living-green/start-composting-your-backyard

You are doing the right thing rotating your soil, but you might want to reconsider tilling each year. There is some research that states that soil does better when it is not disturbed or turned over.http://www.finegardening.com/tilling-one-chore-you-might-be-able-skip

I hope this helps.