Choosing the Best Soil to Grow Your Own Vegetables



There's nothing quite like having homegrown veggies right at your back door, and spring is the optimal time to prepare your garden beds for vegetable growing. From sweet corn, cucumber, tomato, watermelon and hot peppers, hand-picking fresh produce from your very own backyard garden tastes better than anything you can buy in a grocery store. And here in Florida, thanks to the frequent rain and plenty of sunshine, home gardeners can actually grow vegetables all year long. Home gardens are not only convenient for cooking, but fairly inexpensive and super rewarding. 

Kathy of Crowley Nurseries Inc started the nursery in her own backyard in Bayshore Gardens. As the family business began to grow, so did its facility. Now situated out in Old Myakka, her and her family have been working bringing backyards to life for close to 30 years now.

SRQ: I’d like to start a vegetable garden for the summer and noticed there is different potting soil for in-ground, raised bed and container? Does it really matter what potting soil I use? 

Kathy: Black Kow 1 cu. ft. Composted Kow Manure is an organic soil amendment for vegetable gardens, flower beds, lawns and landscapes. It is a natural, organic product that is aerobically composted and adds millions of beneficial microbes to enhance the soil structure and promote healthy plant growth. This is also a great soil if you need to add to your plants or new trees to your yard and helps promote proper drainage in clay soils. You can improve native soils with Black Kow composted cow manure because it has more nutrients than typical garden soil and 4 to 6 times more cow manure than other brands.  Never use more than 1/2 Black Kow to 1/2 your soil mixed—you do not want it too rich.

If you have a particular gardening question you'd like answered and featured in a future column, email

Crowley Nursery, 16423 Jomar Road Sarasota, 941-322-0315.

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