How to Ready Your Garden for Spring Planting

Springtime in Chicago brings a bounty of unpredictable weather, from snow to rain to gorgeous, 65-degree days. (And all of that in the past four days.)

But spring also means it’s time to prepare your garden for planting.

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At WTTW, that means prepping our organic garden that’s managed by Jeanne Nolan and her team at The Organic Gardener. With their help, we’ve got two raised beds for planting throughout the year – and the (nearly) year-round produce that comes with it. (If you want to build your own beds, check out step-by-step instructions, tips and videos.)

The first step, before we dig in and start planting, is preparing the soil. This ensures it has all the necessary nutrients and microbial life our plants need to thrive. 

And when it comes to this year’s crops, we want you to weigh in. What do you want to watch us grow?

Below, choose between various varieties of cauliflower, radishes and kohlrabies (a bulbous vegetable similar to cabbage). Our polls are open for one week and we’ll let you know what our final selections are by April 26.

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How to Start a Garden

Not sure how to start your garden? With help from Jeanne Nolan and her team, we will guide you through the process from selecting a site for your garden to staking crops and everything in between.

Strategies for Container Gardening

If you’re one of the many Chicagoans living in an apartment or condo with limited outdoor space, growing your own food can seem like a challenge – but, Jeanne Nolan says, anything you can grow in the ground can be grown in a container with just a few adjustments.

Need Garden Help?

Ask Jeanne Nolan and The Organic Gardener crew.

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