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Hi I live in Middle Tennessee, just started my first raised bed garden this year, it is appr. 16 X 8 ft. When I setup my bed I put 3 parts topsoil to 1 part compost.

This is what I have planted:

6 tomato plants (3 of those are bush tomato plants)
7 cucumber bushes
2 squash
2 okra
4 jalepeno
42 white onions

Would it be good to mulch my plants now?
I also have access to alot of cow and horse manuer, would that be better?
Or should I just not do anything at all?

Thanks and sorry for all the questions, I am still in the learning phase :)

It's important to make sure the manure is aged, at least a year. I use shredded tree branches that my electric company dumps on my driveway after trimming the trees. I let it set for about 2 years before using. Good luck with your garden!!!
Update some more information

Thanks Annette for your response.

The topsoil that I put in the garden was by the truckload. It is finely sifted topsoil. The compost mixture I also got by the truckload and it was a mixture of some compost and sand I believe.

I put 3 scoops of topsoil down first, then put 1 1/2 scoops of the compost mixture as my top layer. I bought all of this from a nursery.

When I planted my vegetables I added the planting soil with miracle grow (can't remember the name) with my plants in the holes.

I went out and bought a straw stack from Co-op today and strawed my garden. I hope this will help out.

Thanks again for all your help!
Chris HI and welcome from SC. Sounds like you are on the right track, especially using the straw. You should control the weeds with the straw. Your preparation sounds like you have the bed "rich". Keep us posted on your progress and photos please.
COW manure NOT horse manure. Because cows chew cud they have much fewer weed seeds in their manure. I know cuz we have horses so we used theirs and have grass growing everywhere.
I am mulching around my tomatoes with red mulch. Last year I had a volunteer come up in my red mulch by the front porch so I just let it grow. I got more tomatoes off that one and it bloomed and lasted a lot longer than my other tomatoes in the garden. So this year I am going to try it in the garden.
I usually mulch with dried leaves and pine straw but this year haven't done anything as of yet. Waiting to see if it continues to be wet or not. The mulch holds moisture and with the amounts of rain we have had lately and as wet as the garden is, don't want anything in the garden holding the moisture. Too too wet already.
Hi Chris Welcome. If you have a place where you can let that manure age GO-GET-NOW. :) LOL Seriously you will love what it does for your garden. It’s the best organic fertilizer and soil amendment you can find. You can just mix it in with your soil or use it to top dress. I only wish I could get it for free. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to