The first step in Garden Prep is to get your (*&#^$@#% machinery working again! Our tiller has worked great for 2 or 3 years now… will tear through all kinds of weeds and grass and turn the soil over quite nicely.

It looks like at the end of last season we did not burn off/drain off the gas and it got the carb all kerfluffeled. Not being a small engine guy, I tried starting it .. a lot. Surprisingly that did not work. What did work was:

Day 10: drain all of the gas; pull the carburetor bowl; clean the gunk out of the bowl; spray everything I could reach with carb cleaner (Canadian Tire about $6); put the bowl back on and then refill with fresh premier high grade gas (not the other way around like I actually did). Remove and clean the air filter. Try starting it x20. Nothing.

Day 11: probably flooded the carb yesterday, try again today. on x10 pull it started… and continued to run. Yay! Since it was running, let’s take it on over to Vegbed #5 and till that over in prep for the garlic planting next month. It did very well, not stalling ever. It did get gummed up with weeds and grass a few times but otherwise 30 minutes later as much of the bed and been turned over as possible.
We still have some flowers, sunflowers and squash in the bed, that will be coming out soon, before garlic planting.

In addition, since this bed tends to be very damp and wet all of the time, being closest to the intermittent creek we have, we added a 25kg bag of sand spread over the bed. This is in the hopes of making it drain better in the future. We will probably add some more, along with a smaller amount of composted sheep manure than last year, and some of our own compost. It could use some more earth as well but that will not be coming until the spring, too late for this crop.