Asked March 03, 2021, 11:44 AM EST
I moved to Michigan and still don't feel confident I know the weather enough after three years.
What is the real frost free date in Romulus, MI?
I'm finally able to start a garden now, but I tried googling the local frost date and I've gotten dates ranging a month apart so I'm not sure which one to trust for starting my vegetable seeds or transplanting. I am starting a raised bed garden from scratch so I don't feel comfortable trusting soul temperature measurements (as a guide for timing) until next year.
How should I orient my garden beds?
I also can't find people agreeing on how to orient the beds N-S/E-W. Even those that say "it depends..." don't explain it very well so I can choose for my own property.
I spent yesterday mapping out the full sun areas of my yard so I know where it's best to place the garden and how the shadows move. I just can't figure out how I should orient and arrange the beds. My property has good sun but the air flow is interrupted on the North and South sides by long one story homes with pine trees on the West side and two oak trees on the East side.
I'll be growing tall and frost sensitive tomatoes and bell peppers, which I've found are important to consider when making these decisions.
Is it okay to start a vegetable garden in 100% compost?
I've been trying to nail down where to source my growing medium and soil in this area. There are some places with 100% peat moss, a peat/topsoil blend, 100% compost, and a compost/topsoil blend. I've been recommended 100% compost by a company, but I'm not sure what to amend it with. (I had a container garden least year and the new putting soil was lacking for some vegetables, so I'm wary.) I'm planning on amending it with a slow release 3:4:4 organic fertilizer called "garden tone" (for the P K) and some pelletized gypsum (for the calcium). Is there anything else I should consider?
Apologies for the long questions. I don't have anyone to ask since the pandemic keeps me from going to garden club meetings and making new gardener friends in the area.
Thanks for your help,
Wayne County Michigan