Is there anything I should do to the soil before planting

As a general rule for indoor plants, we recommend potting mix. For outdoor plants we recommend garden soil. For more information on individual plants, you may want to contact your Agricultural Extension Agent. Sometimes they have Master Gardeners on hand who can answer your questions. If not, you may want to contact a nursery or even your local library. Consult plant tags for soil information when you purchase your plants and shrubs.