Seattle gardeners have been warned against disturbing the soil too much, with Master Gardeners advising that it is only tilled once annually.
According to seattlepi.com, both new gardeners and those who have been round the greenhouse quite a few times are guilty of believing that soil needs to be double-dug on a regular basis.
It says that even in the maritime Northwest, where soils are heavy and compacted, gardeners should only aerate the soil once annually.
Adding a layer of seed meals, lime or kelp meal should be enough to help the soil remain healthy and light throughout the rest of the year and a layer of mulch such as organic compost is ideal for helping to suppress weeds and nourish plant roots.
With winter all but gone, gardeners will be busy preparing their land and greenhouses for the spring sowing season.
This year is expected to see a number of gardeners set aside some ground for a vegetable patch or market garden and looking after the soil for this is essential to the gardens success.