I want to turn a part of my garden into a vegetable plot. It started with my wife suggesting that the rose garden was getting difficult to keep clear of weeds informing me that if I became unable to perform that task she did not want to inherit it. At the same time we had just enjoyed one row of potatoes and the crop from a dozen runner beans which I had planted on the edge of the rose garden for fun.
I dug the roses up and as IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m to tight to pay the prices asked for turf I dug it up from the top of the garden and used that to cover the now defunct rose garden.
That left a potential vegetable, my wifeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s ambition to ensure that I took regular cardiovascular exercise and the thought that it would not take long to dig it over.
It was then that I found the ground composed of a top three inches of good soil and then solid grey clay so as a novice I immediately took to my books to seek advice only to come away from them confused.
Half of my gardening books sugested I just scratch about the three inches of good soil and plant in that and the other half sugested double digging it and using manure so I started and its killing me. I donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t mind the clay but IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m also blessed with loads of old roots.
I have unlimited access to well rotted manure and I have discovered that I can hire a tracked digger for a very reasonable sum and I maj just use one to dig the trenches. So far I have dug one trench by hand about eighteen inches deep and moved the soil/clay to the end of the plot. I dumped about nine inches of manure into the trench and am in the process of digging the next trench dumping the soil/clay from it on top of the manure in the first trench. When I have finished the plot I intend dumping three inches or so of manure on top of it and forking it in.
Although my books inform me that clay is actually quite nutritious it doesnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t look that good to me so my questions are as follow:
Is what I have done so far acceptable and if not what should I have done?