Amending without Disturbing

MEMama3

Songster
6 Years
May 23, 2013
1,511
100
148
Vacation Land; Maine
I have perennial beds that contain many self seeding annuals and shallow bulbs. I want to amend the soil this year, but I'm not sure how or when to go about it without disrupting the seeds and bulbs. I'm in zone 5 if that helps things.

Would a compost tea maybe work? How do I loosen the compacting soil without harming stuff?
 

lazy gardener

Crossing the Road
7 Years
Nov 7, 2012
27,615
27,078
917
CENTRAL MAINE zone 4B
I'd just throw some compost on the bed. I have a pretty laid back approach to flowers, especially since getting chickens. Basically, if it'll grow and bloom, it stays. If it doesn't like what I have to offer in my flower beds, it leaves of it's own accord. The girls have decided that they love dust bathing in my rose bed... oh well. I have some beautiful irises in there... If they, and the many bulbs in that bed survive the dust bathing, they get to stay! If not, in the spring, I'll plant some dahlias (one of my favorites), petunias, and other annuals to brighten it up.

I understand that you're looking for stuff to re-seed. You can gather some of those seeds before you amend the bed. The rest of the stuff should come up through the mulch just fine. Compost tea would work, however, i'd be cautious about putting too much fertility in there this late in the season. You don't want to spur new growth if you have any woody shrubs in there. The new growth doesn't survive the winter well. If there are no shrubs, you could do the compost tea, or just put down a layer of mulch which would be a slow release amendment, and help protect the stuff in the bed. Bone meal would be a good fall amendment.
 

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