So far I have gotten amazing answers and a warm welcome here. I want to let you all in on the plans for my fencing and get some ideas on proper soil prep. I'll start with the soil.
Last year all I did was cut grass layer off by hand, tilled the existing soil, then layered down bagged manure and a few bags of plain soil. Then another good till and raked it out. Then I planted the seeds immediately in the raised rows shown below.
This year I am doing the rows in the opposite direction and adding more veggies since all I did was corn and some lettuce.
I cut the corn down (used it for fall decor on the house) and put hay over the existing area. The corn roots (bottom of stalks too) are still there and I'm trying to figure out the best way to get that area prepped. Questions:
1) Do I remove the hay or till it in with the soil?
2) Do I remove the corn roots or till them as well?
3) I typically as told above just throw in some fresh soil and manure and call it a day. Anything else to ensure proper setup?
4) When should I start this? I live in CT, it's late February, and temps are not freezing on average. There was not really a winter to speak of so the ground has never really frozen.
Now onto Part II, the fencing. Last year as you saw above I used a simple set of stakes, staples, and chicken wire. I want something a little more permanent and plan on utilizing metal green T-stakes with that rectangular welded wire coated in green. I only need to cover two sides and not very tall since I have a smaller dog who does not bother the garden one bit regardless. So here are my layouts:
-Perimeter with 4' stakes and 3' fencing tied into the chain link in my yard.
-Use 4' stakes for pepper trellis
-Use 5' stakes for the cucumbers
-Use tomato caged (round ones) for the tomato plants
1) Should I use the same welded wire from the perimeter for the trellis design of the peppers/cucumbers? If not then what else would be more than sufficient?
2) Has anyone created some type of gate with this fencing? Instead of stepping over like I did last year I was hoping to maybe just take a section of the wire and frame it with some small wood studs and just use some type of clamp between two T-stakes or metal round stakes?
I know I'm probably sounding crazy and a bit overboard but I want it to look neat and clean.