Tilling ? How bout NO TILL
I was recently able to make the acquaintance of a master gardener from Tennessee. As spring was approaching, we got to talking about gardening (how I found out he was a master gardener). Well, he plants a variety of things to benefit food banks, nursing homes, etc... even fresh cut flowers. Said his method is "almost" organic, but said there are a few things that just requires spray, or they simply won't make it. The interesting thing he mentioned though, he does not till the soil. Says the soil structure and worms, etc... are too critical to lose. After some thought, I totally agree. If you have mulch, whether it be leaves, clipppings, newspaper, whatever, ready to go, simply turn over the small required space to get the plant(s) in. If you think about it, garden plant roots are small, and contained to an area the size of a shovel head or two. You mechanically till the entire area, only to compact it down by constantly walking on it.
Well anyhow, he convinced me to give it a go this year. The key seems to be having the weed suppressor (mulch) ready and on-hand early on.