Starting a garden is like a building, it's all about the location. Either way, work the soil only when it's wet enough to form a loose ball in your fist, but dry enough to melt when you release it. Digging when the soil is too dry is a harder job and can damage the soil structure if it is too wet. Use a shovel or spade fork to gently twist the top 6 to 8 inches of soil, mixing the organic matter from Step 4 at the same time.
Walking on prepared beds compacts the floor, so place plywood boards temporarily to distribute your weight evenly. Seedlings should never be allowed to dry out, so water daily. It narrows as the plants grow. Transplants also need frequent watering (about every other day) until their roots are established.
After that, how often you need to water depends on soil, humidity, and rainfall, although once a week is a good place to start. Clay soil dries more slowly than sandy soil, so you won't need to water it as often. Sunny and windy conditions dry the soil more quickly than cold, cloudy weather. Not sure yet? Feel the soil 3-4 inches below the surface.
If you're feeling dry, it's time to water. Water slowly and deeply, so that the water absorbs rather than drains away. To minimize evaporation, water early in the morning. Water: let's not forget free rainwater.
Almost any house has a gutter spout. I capture rainwater from the roof of my small greenhouse for the greenhouse. Also have a 45-gallon trash can in the gutter of the house. Use it to pull the toilet chain when it turns off and you are in the garden.
Be sure to build it with an overflow hose). Most plants will prefer moderately fertile, well-drained soil. This means nutrient-rich but not imbalanced soil. The soil structure must also be open enough to allow water to penetrate and then drain freely.
The best thing to do in most gardens is to buy a top soil mix, which will give your plants the best possible start. When starting a new vegetable garden or vegetable assignment, it can be tempting to face it all at once. It's much better to do it little by little. You can easily cover areas you don't want to grow with black cardboard or plastic, to stop weed growth, while working in a different area.