How to rejuvenate vegetable garden

Q: My raised vegetable garden plot is about 20 years old and even though I add 10-12 bags of purchased manure and about seven wheelbarrows of my own compost every spring, it is just rundown and not producing very well.

I have tried to find out about a method I’ve heard about in the past that has something to do with planting potatoes in it. Do you know of this? Do you leave the potatoes in for the year to decompose? Any other ideas?

I am just getting so tired of all the work I put into it and somethings grow but not squash, and cucumber, beets and the rest gets eaten by bugs and rabbits!

It is an exciting time, I am also getting my soil ready and mixing up my composting worm bins. I honestly have not heard of a potato remedy; although, it may be very good for breaking up clay soil.

I would first suggest dealing with the bunnies, they are very destructive, a small fence would help. For insect control a preventative method would be to add beneficial nematodes and ladybugs; you can learn more at Get started early before the problem shows up!

From what you are having a hard time growing, it sounds like it may be a trace nutrient problem, perhaps calcium. Consider adding trace elements, available at your local buckerfields or similar. Glacial Rock dust may help. Other great remedies to boost texture and nutrients, in addition to your valuable compost and manure, are cover crops, leaf mold, seaweed, alfalfa meal and wormcastings.