Get rid of the sod covering the area you plan to plant. If you want quick results (if it’s already spring and you want veggies this summer), cut it out.
3. Clear the Ground
Slice under the sod with a spade, cut the sod into sections to make it easier to remove, then put it on your compost pile to decompose.
It’s easier to smother the grass with newspaper, but it takes longer. (In other words, you should start in the fall before spring planting.) Cover your future garden with five sheets of newspaper; double that amount if your lawn is Bermuda grass or St. Augustine grass. Spread a 3-inch layer of compost (or combination of potting soil and topsoil) on the newspaper and wait. It'll take about four months for the compost and paper to decompose. But by spring, you’ll have a bed ready to plant with no grass or weeds and plenty of rich soil.