The location of your garden is very important. You will need to consider how much sun the space will get, the soil quality, how much water it will receive naturally, as well as ease of access to an additional water source. This will help to determine the type of garden that will be suitable for your area.
Clean up old beds or create new ones, removing all weeds and freshening borders, incorporating as much organic matter as you can. Try not to turn soil that is still saturated from melting snow and rain, as it will become too compact and difficult for plant roots to penetrate.
Incorporate fertilizer and/or compost into the soil before planting to ensure an even distribution of nutrients. An all-purpose fertilizer may be used or, depending on the vegetation that you wish to include in your garden, you may use fertilizers that are more plant specific. Starting small is a good way to master the basics, such as water and soil requirements, pest control, plant selection, garden design and maintenance.