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Turning grass into Vegetable patch

Hello all.

I know little about gardening but do have a house with two large gardens either side and one side has a pointless rectangle of grass about 15 feet by 6, it just does nothing so I thought about turning it over to veg.

Should I just rip out the grass and throw that onto a compost heap and then leave it for a bit or what? 

Sorry If I'm sounding like an idiot. I've just about managed to get the other garden under control thanks to a hedge trimmer a rake and lots of hard work. 


  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Posts: 11,391
    I'd use a sharp spade to skim off the top 2 inches or so of turf then stack that upside down in a heap somewhere out of the way, water it and cover.  In about a year you will have a nice loam to use in planting out and potting.  If the soil below is hard and compacted then dig it over well, otherwise turning it to about a fork's depth would be OK.  I'd then add at least a 4 inch layer of well-rotted manure (the bagged stuff from GCs is fine and easy to handle) before digging it in.  Doing that will get your patch off to the best possible start.
    Because the soil needs time to settle and improve by the worms to doing their work on the manure, you will be a bit limited as to what you can grow this year but potatoes would be an excellent first crop. Peas, beans etc. would also work well, as long as you don't sow them too early.
    In autumn, add another 2 to 4" layer of well-rotted manure and leave it over winter.  Come spring and you will have an easily workable soil.
    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
  • Thanks, much appreciated. 
  • FireFire Posts: 17,332
    @BobTheGardener, out of interest, why do you skim off the top two inches?
  • Blue OnionBlue Onion Posts: 2,964
    I turned a bunch of grass into a raised veg patch a few years ago.. but, being an inherently lazy gardener, I went with the lasagna method.  I used cement blocks at the raised edges, as they last forever and were easy to transport in batches in my car over several trips to the GC.  I put down a layer of cardboard and other garden scraps as a bottom layer.  They've done really well over the past few years.  The one thing I regret was not spraying round-up (and allowing it all to die) in the area prior to laying the cardboard.  I am fighting bindweed and field grass in the beds since year two.. and I know it's just come up from underneath once the cardboard rotted out.  
    Utah, USA.
  • FireFire Posts: 17,332
    Onion, interesting.
  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Posts: 11,391
    @Firefly∆ For the same reasons Onion mentioned really.  If you just dig grass over, you will have bits of it start reappearing in the bed, especially invasive species like couch grass which you may not know you have.  Whenever I do anything like that, I try and remove all bits of roots as I go.
    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
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