WE wound down the second year of our garden recently here in Topeka Kansas (north east Kansas), it was just grass before and a patch of very poor soil that may have been brought in years ago to fill an old systern or septic tank, the first year of the garden we mulched with grass clippings for a while then switched to hay
to keep the weeds down and to hopefuly help the soil condition, then in the fall we cleaned out the chicken
house and it was scattered around and then we covered the entire garden with leaves about 6 inches deep and let the chickens in all winter, the leaves and hay broke down really well, we then plowed it under in the spring. This year we have added about two yards of composted stuff from over last winter and this summer as well as chicken
house hay and the leaves again, my wife has rabbits
and we have been adding that waste to the garden all summer when available and will continue doing so when she clans the bunny barn out. We tested the soil with a little kit from the store and it shows the nitrogen level to be very low.
Our goal is to improve the soil from its poor clayish form to a consistancy that will be workable with a fork and avoid plowing or tilling if possible and have a good health levels of twhat makes a good soil.
Our garden produced ok each year so far but not what would be expected from other gardens I have had in the past.
What steps should
we change or add to improve the nitrogen level without getting some commercial bagg of manufactured stuff?
the soil consistancy has greatly improved from it's almost concrete
hgard state when we first brok the ground so I feel we are making improvements.
Should we add something different over the winter?